Date: December 9, 2021
Location: Sam’s Town Live, Las Vegas, Nevada
Commentators: Matt Striker, D’Lo Brown
We are on the way to Hard To Kill and the show still has a long way to go. You can see a lot of the card from here so hopefully we get some more work put in this week. A few more matches would help, as long as they pay enough attention to what is already there too. Let’s get to it.
Opening recap looks at Matt Cardona and W. Morrissey becoming co-#1 contenders, with their title shot coming against Moose at Hard To Kill.
Chris Sabin/Mickie James vs. Matthew Rehwoldt/Deonna Purrazzo
The women start things off but Rehwoldt comes in before Purrazzo does anything. Rehwoldt shoulders Mickie down to start but misses an elbow, allowing Sabin to come in and strike away. Sabin cranks on the arm but gets sent into the corner for a kick to the ribs. It’s back to Purrazzo to kick away at the ribs and to knock Mickie off the apron (Mickie should pay better attention). Rehwoldt grabs a chinlock, followed by a sitout powerbomb for two.
For some reason Rehwoldt goes up top, allowing Sabin to dropkick him out of the air. Mickie comes back in for the Thesz press on Purrazzo as everything breaks down. Sabin can’t Cradle Shock Purrazzo so he gets sent outside, where Purrazzo hits a dive to take him down. Mickie dives onto both of them but Rehwoldt catches her on top on the way back in. The top rope Thesz pres is blocked and Purrazzo reverses into a sunset flip (with Rehwoldt helping) for the pin at 8:16.
Rating: C+. It was certainly action packed and that’s a good way to start. Purrazzo vs. James is advanced a bit more and there should be a solid title match when they get around to it. Rehwoldt isn’t the most thrilling star but he works well as Purrazzo’s muscle who can do his thing well enough.
Matt Cardona is ready for a World Title opportunity because he has only had one before and didn’t win. W. Morrissey comes in to call him Midcardona and promises to go take what he deserves. Threats are made to Cardona, who wants to have a match tonight. He’ll even put up his Hard To Kill spot.
We look at Violent By Design vs. Rich Swann/Willie Mack/Heath/Rhino.
Eric Young says Rhino is like a rat who keeps coming for electrified cheese. He’s ready for Rhino in a street fight tonight.
Rohit Raju vs. Lawrence D.
Yes Lawrence rather than Larry, despite what the graphics say. Lawrence shushes him and says he’s a lover instead of a fighter before dropping Raju with a shoulder. A hiptoss sets up a running splash for two but Raju is back up with a kick to the head. Cue Josh Alexander to tell Raju to get out….and then attacks him for saying no, drawing the DQ 2:14.
Alexander wants Jonah out here right now and after a break he gets…Scott D’Amore. Jonah isn’t coming out here, but Alexander can have Jonah at Hard To Kill. That’s not cool with Alexander, who wants to get past Jonah to win the World Title back. D’Amore wants that too, but Alexander has to wait. Raju’s goon Raj Singh tries to come back in but gets planted with the C4 Spike, which is Alexander keeping his emotions in check.
The Bullet Club WILL NOT sign posters and threaten a backstage worker until Laredo Kid breaks it up.
Steve Maclin tells Scott D’Amore that he hasn’t been pinned or submitted. D’Amore says he hasn’t beaten anyone either, so it’s a no for now. Maclin leaves so here is Decay to want in on the Knockouts Ultimate X match. For once, D’Amore has too much going on so he is delegating this to someone else. Who else? More on that later it seems.
Learning Tree vs. FinJuice
Juice Robinson starts with Zicky Dice, who comes complete with a rather long ribbon. Robinson deals with that so VSK tags himself in for a cheap shot to take over. That doesn’t last long either as Robinson gets over for the tag to David Finlay to clean house. Dice runs into VSK though and it’s a backbreaker/middle rope elbow to give Robinson the pin at 3:23.
Rating: C-. Little more than a squash here and that’s what it should have been. FinJuice continues to be one of the better tag teams around here and the Learning Tree is little more than jobbers anyway. Nothing match, but it gives FinJuice a little momentum going into…whatever it is they’re doing next.
Moose comes up to W. Morrissey to offer one more alliance to get rid of Matt Cardona. Morrissey has this himself.
Eric Young tells Violent By Design to stay in the back because he has this himself.
Rhino vs. Eric Young
Street fight. Rhino throws in the weapons but Young throws them back out, earning himself a whip into the corner. That’s fine with Rhino, who tosses Young outside to start the real fighting. Young gets dropped back first onto the apron so it’s time to throw in some weapons. A few right hands stagger Rhino but he’s fine enough to suplex Young on the ramp. Back in and Rhino hits him in the head with a metal sheet, drawing even more ECW chants.
The trashcan is wedged in the corner so of course Rhino is sent face first into it (as he deserves for putting it there in the first place. Young chairs Rhino down and puts the chair on his face but the top rope elbow is broken up. A superplex brings Young down and a shoulder drops him again. Cue Violent By Design to break up the Gore so here is Heath for the save. Young uses the distraction to get in a hockey mask shot for two but here are Rich Swann and Willie Mack to go after Young again. Now it’s the Good Brothers running in for another save so Young can get in a low blow and piledriver for the pin at 8:06.
Rating: C. This was all of the brawling that you would have expected here but egads there was a lot of interference here. The Violent By Design stuff has lost a lot of its luster and the never ending feud with Rhino hasn’t helped things. Hopefully we’re gearing up for the team’s destruction, but it wouldn’t shock me to see them win the Tag Team Titles at Hard To Kill either.
The Influence and the IInspiration think they could have a good super group but can’t agree on a name.
Influence/IInspiration vs. Decay
What a weird choice for a mixed tag. Black Taurus scares Madison Rayne to the floor and Decay teases a quadruple dive as we take a break. Back with Cassie choking Rosemary in the corner but she pops up to glare at IInspiration. Rayne comes back in to choke Crazzy Steve, which works as well as you would expect. It’s back to Taurus, who tosses Dashwood onto Kaleb With A K. Back in and Rosemary spears Dashwood for the pin at 9:07.
Rating: D. This felt like something Russo would book as the good guys had the advantage and then just won without much trouble. I’m really not sure what the point of this was and there wasn’t exactly much of an explanation. There was talent involved here, but it was such a weird presentation that I’m not sure what they were going for here.
Post match the IInspiration yells at the Influence.
Lady Frost upset Kimber Lee on Before The Impact.
Lady Frost is happy to be on the roster and gets a welcome from Scott D’Amore. She wants in the Knockouts Ultimate X match, but D’Amore tells her to talk to the new person in charge of the Knockouts Division: Gail Kim. Eh makes sense. Frost is in, along with Tasha Steelz, Jordynne Grace, Rachael Ellering, Chelsea Green and Rosemary.
Hard To Kill rundown.
W. Morrissey vs. Matt Cardona
If Morrissey wins, Cardona is out of the Hard To Kill World Title match. The fight starts on the floor before the bell with Cardona being driven back first into the apron. There’s posting to make it worse and now we get the opening bell, with Morrissey pounding away even more. We take a break and come back with Cardona fighting out of a chinlock but getting knocked HARD out to the floor. Morrissey posts him again and Cardona is in big trouble (again).
Cardona is busted open, so Morrissey pulls the cut up against the post to make it worse. Back in and Morrissey misses a charge into the corner to give Cardona a much needed breather. A faceplant drops Morrissey and a middle rope dropkick sends him into the corner. Morrissey runs him over again but the powerbomb is countered into Radio Silence to give Cardona two. Back up and Cardona kicks him square in the jaw before pounding at the cut. Morrissey gets so carried away that he shoves the referee for the DQ at 13:38.
Rating: C+. I wasn’t wild on the ending but it was about all they could do here. Ultimately, Cardona needed to avoid a loss while you don’t want Morrissey getting pinned, leaving this as about as good as it was going to get. Not a great match, but Cardona is starting to look awesome with his underdog stuff and that’s a good thing.
Post match Morrissey decks the referee and powerbombs Cardona to blow off some steam. Cue Chelsea Green to cover Cardona so here is Moose to yell at Morrissey. A big boot drops Moose and Morrissey shoves Green, triggering the brawl from Cardona. Moose left the title in the ring so Cardona holds it up to end the show.
Overall Rating: C+. What matters here is the fact that you can see most of the Hard To Kill card from here. They still have a long way to go with some of the stories, but at least we have something to build on already. I’m curious to see where some of these stories go and that’s a good place to be so close to a pay per view.
Matthew Rehwoldt/Deonna Purrazzo b. Chris Sabin/Mickie James – Sunset flip with assist from Rehwoldt
Rohit Raju b. Lawrence D. via DQ when Josh Alexander interfered
FinJuice b. Learning Tree – Backbreaker/middle rope elbow combination to VSK
Eric Young b. Rhino – Piledriver
Decay b. Influence/IInspiration – Spear to Dashwood
Matt Cardona b. W. Morrissey via DQ when Morrissey shoved the referee
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