Kyle’s Wheely Good Impact Bound For Glory Review 10th October 2022
Impact's version of Wrestlemania is here, and Kyle reviews all the action!
Well, here we are again everyone it is now time for Impact's version of Wrestlemania, as this is my first pay-per-view review in some time this should be quite interesting.
Pre-Show: Impact Digital Media Championship: Brian Myers Open Challenge
During the preshow Brian Myers issues an open challenge for his Digital Media Championship, and who is the person that answers the call I hear you ask? It’s none other than… Dirty Dango (Fandango).
After a little bit of waiting, they start trying to feel each other out. Dango hits a dropkick to put the champ on the mat.
A legdrop gives Dango a two count and it’s time for Myers to escape out to the floor. Myers wins the fight outside.
Back in the ring now and Myers with a chinlock, as the fans trying to cheer Dango back up to his feet.
Some stomping sets up another chinlock but Dango sends him outside for the slingshot dive. Dango slugs away back inside, setting up a Falcon Arrow for two. Myers manages a quick implant DDT for two but Dango is back with a superkick into a tornado DDT. Something off the top misses though and it’s a spear into the Roster Cut from Myers to retain the title
My thoughts: Not a bad match to give people a little taster of what is to come in the pay-per-view, but let’s be honest, there was absolutely no way Brian Myers was going to lose this title and to be quite honest I feel Dirty Dango deserved more than just to appear on the preshow.
Impact X-Division Championship: Frankie Kazarian vs. Mike Bailey
A quick handshake and here we go. They trade some early rollups for two each before Bailey has to bail to the ropes to avoid the chickenwing. A dropkick sets up another failed chickenwing attempt so Bailey sends him outside for the moonsault to the floor. Back in and Kazarian knocks him off the top for a crash to the floor as the pace slows. Kazarian starts in on the leg, which is never a good idea for a Bailey match.
Bailey fights up and hits a kick to the chest, setting up the bouncing kicks into the running corkscrew shooting star press. Kazarian gets up this time and hits Back to The Future (electric chair bridged back into a rollup) for two before they knock each other down for a breather. Back up and Bailey kicks him in the face, setting up the standing moonsault knees. The Ultimate Weapon gets two and Bailey is stunned. The Flamingo Driver is countered into the chickenwing, which is broken up just as fast.
Kazarian misses a charge and falls to the floor, where Bailey is waiting on him with the top rope Asai moonsault. That’s shrugged off though as Kazarian comes back in with a slingshot cutter for his own near fall. The Flux Capacitor (super Spanish Fly) gives Kazarian two but another Back to The Future is countered into a poisonrana. Bailey goes up for another Ultimate Weapon but gets pulled into another cutter. The chickenwing gives Kazarian the title back.
My thoughts: This is what I love about Impact what a great way to open the show, they were flying around the ring until one of them got caught this is what you come to expect from the X-Division and this is why I fell in love with impact to begin with.
Mickie James is ready to deliver under pressure with her career on the line. She isn’t passing the torch because she is the torch (A pro wrestling torch?) and tonight, they’re burning Albany down.
We recap Mickie James vs. Mia Yim. They fought at the beginning of Mia’s career and now she wants to be the one to end Mickie’s career and finish the Last Rodeo.
Mickie James vs. Mia Yim
we all know the stipulation by now if Mickie James loses, she will have to has to retire but I think we all know what will happen personally I don’t think she is ready to retire just yet. The fans are split as we start with a rather aggressive lockup. They both try armdrags so neither can get anywhere, meaning Mickie has to grab a headlock. A headlock takeover puts Mia down so she shoves Mickie away, with Mickie coming up favouring her knee. Mia takes her down by the knee out of the corner and some hard kicks make it even worse. Back up and Mickie hits a neckbreaker for a breather but can’t immediately nip up off the flapjack.
Mia is right back up with a buckle bomb but Mickie…. kisses her out of the corner and hits a middle rope Thesz press. The Mick Kick is countered into a stretch muffler though and Mia cranks away to slow Mickie right back down. Eat Defeat connects but James falls into the ropes. Mia is frustrated and misses the cannonball, allowing Mickie to hit the MickDT
My thoughts: although this match stipulation was a very important one it was quite clear to me that there was absolutely no way Mickie James was going to retire, if that was to truly happen it would most likely end up being a main event-ish match to give her a much better send-off.
The match itself was a little lacklustre but still somewhat entertaining.
We recap VXT vs. the Death Dolls. VXT took the Knockouts Tag Team Titles from Rosemary/Taya Valkyrie so now Jessicka is taking Rosemary’s place.
Impact Knockouts World Tag Team Championship: VXT vs. Death Dollz
Jessicka and Green start things off with Green being sent straight into the wrong corner. Some splashes knock her down but she’s straight over for the tag off to Purrazzo. Valkyrie comes in and takes her down for a quick double stomp and Pandemonium makes it even worse. The champs get in some stereo kicks to slow Valkyrie down though and a double snap suplex gets two.
Valkyrie drives Green into the corner and makes the tag but the referee doesn’t see it to keep the champs in control. As tends to be the case, the hot tag goes through a few seconds later and it’s Jessicka coming in to clean house. Purrazzo manages a Downward Spiral into a stomp to give Green two. I’m Prettier is loaded up but Valkyrie makes the save, setting up a kick to the head into the Sick Driver for the pin and the titles.
My thoughts: Well this was a huge surprise to me I was not expecting VXT to relinquish or lose the tag titles just yet to be honest I was hoping that they would hold them for a little bit longer but I guess not.
We recap Honor No More vs. the Motor City Machine Guns for the Tag Team Titles. Honor No More won the titles to make the stable feel important. Then the Guns earned the title shot to set this up. Not that complicated of a story but the match should be good.
Impact World Tag Team Championship: Honor No More vs. Motor City Machine Guns
Taven takes Shelley down to start and hits his catchphrase before it’s quickly off to Bennett vs. Sabin. Bennett takes him into the corner and stomps away, allowing Taven to come back in for an elbow to the head. Shelley comes in to kick Bennett off the apron though and it’s a kick to Taven’s arm to take over.
The Guns start taking turns on the arm, including stereo spinning kicks to both arms. That’s enough to draw in the illegal Bennett so he gets dropped as well. Taven misses a charge into the corner, allowing Bennett to get in a cheap shot from the apron so the champs can take over again. Some kicks to the head get two on Shelley and it’s a kick to the face into a backbreaker for the same.
Shelley is right back up and brings in Sabin to clean house, including the dropkick/tornado DDT combination to drop the champs. The Downward Spiral/missile dropkick to the back combination gets two on Taven but he’s right back up with Just the Tip for two of his own. Hail Maria (spike piledriver) gets two but the Proton Pack is broken up.
Something like a double Death Valley Driver plants Bennett and Taven gets tied in the Tree of Woe. Shelley launches Bennett into Taven but Taven breaks up something off the top. Bennett’s superkick accidentally hits Maria (BIG pop for that) but the distraction lets Taven grab a rollup
My thoughts: When you have two amazing teams and you give them over fifteen minutes, there’s no surprise you’re going to get one of the best matches on the card. Not the best I grant you, but it’s up there. Granted, the Motor City Machine Guns having great matches is not surprising and is something I feel everybody should get the chance to see. No surprise that Honor No More looked great, I’m ok with them getting to keep the titles, as they deserve the spotlight for a bit longer.
We look at Raven being inducted into the Hall of Fame on the pre-show, where he DDT’ed Tommy Dreamer one more time.
We see a video on the Call Your Shot gauntlet match. It’s basically a Royal Rumble for the Money in The Bank contract (for any title) with battle royal rules until the final two, when it’s a singles match.
Call Your Shot Gauntlet Match
Twenty entrants, sixty second intervals (save for two minutes after the first two entrants), Eric Young is in at #1 and Joe Hendry is in at #2. Hendry spends a bit too much time posing and gets jumped from behind but he’s right back with a suplex. A spinebuster is loaded up but Steve Maclin is in at #3. Maclin loads Hendry up in the Tree of Woe for the running shoulder to the ribs and it’s Rich Swann in at #4. House is cleaned until Hendry plants him with a tilt-a-whirl slam and PCO is in at #5.
Now it’s PCO getting to clean house, including a hanging DDT to Maclin. Savannah Evans is in at #6 and gets in PCO’s face, which doesn’t seem to be the most logical move. Everyone pairs off and it’s Johnny Swinger in at #7. Swinger slams Evans but hurts his back a bit, leaving Tasha Steelz to come in at #8. Evans and Steelz beat up Swinger until Killer Kelly is in at #9. Kelly goes after Evans so Steelz dumps both of them to clear out the ring a bit. Moose is in at #10, giving us Young, Hendry, Maclin, Swann, PCO, Swinger and Moose at the halfway point.
There goes Hendry, leaving Moose to slug it out with PCO, with the latter being sent out rather quickly. Sami Callihan is in at #11 and powerbombs Maclin as everyone pairs off again. Taylor Wilde is in at #12 and does very little until Gisele Shaw is in at #13. Young is in trouble so here are a bunch of guys in yellow hoodies to save him. One such hooded guy, who reveals himself as Deaner, tosses Callihan. Bully Ray of all people is in at #14, for his first match in Impact in about eight years.
Ray tosses Steelz and its Tommy Dreamer in at #15 and we get the stare down with Ray for the ECW reunion (as mentioned by commentary). Rhino is in at #16 and we get the official ECW reunion, with Swinger joining in. Swinger is immediately tossed and it’s Bhupinder Gujjar in at #17. Dreamer gets tossed and it’s Heath in at #18. Heath and Rhino get to clean house until Bobby Fish (hometown boy) is in at #19. The ring is getting full and it’s even worse with Matt Cardona coming in at #20.
The final grouping is Young, Maclin, Swann, Moose, Wilde, Shaw, Ray, Rhino, Gujjar, Heath, Fish and Cardona. Hold on though as Cardona is cool with staying on the floor as Moose gets rid of Rhino. Heath is out as well and Cardona helps get rid of Moose, setting up a showdown with Ray. As commentary explains that this is a thing in the NWA and on Twitter, Wilde plays D-Von in a What’s Up to Cardona for a cool moment.
Wilde and Shaw fight on the ropes so Cardona throws them both out, only to be dumped by Gujjar. Young neckbreaker Gujjar on the apron for the elimination but gets kicked in the face by Swann to get rid of him too. We’re down to Swann, Maclin, Ray and Fish, with everyone else going after Ray, because he’s a monster you see.
With Ray breaking that up, Maclin gets rid of Swann and Ray gets rid of Fish, meaning it’s time for Maclin vs. Ray in a regular match for the title shot. Ray wins the slug out but gets caught in an Angle Slam for two. A Rock Bottom gives Ray the same and the Bully Bomb
My thoughts: I understand this is designed to be the big match but did they really have to go back to Bully Ray getting the title shot? I’m not a hundred percent sure what they were trying to achieve here with this result. I was under the impression that this match was more geared to up-and-coming talent getting an opportunity, rather than a returning legend, but I suppose that’s more the way I would book this. I’m only a fan, so what do I know?…
As for the rest of the match, it was your usual gauntlet match. There were a lot of people coming in and going out rather quickly, with too many people in the ring, which made it extremely difficult to follow from time to time. We will have to see what happens with bully Ray’s title shot but I still think it’s going to be pointless and absolute waste when somebody else would probably be more deserving of the shot and the push.
We recap Jordynne Grace vs. Masha Slamovich for the Knockouts Title. They’re both monsters and Grace is the last line of defence against the monster Slamovich. This has been treated as a big deal in the build to this show and it has been pretty interesting.
Impact Knockouts World Championship: Jordynne Grace vs. Masha Slamovich
They start very fast with Grace hammering her down in the corner and out to the floor, setting up a running kick through the ropes. Slamovich gets in a kick to the head on the apron and a belly to back piledriver on said apron knocks Grace a bit loopy. Back in and we hit the reverse chinlock to stay on Grace’s neck but Grace fights out without much effort.
A spinebuster out of the corner plants Slamovich again and they chop it out. Stereo spinning backfists put both of them down and the fans seem to approve. Back up and a Michinoku Driver gives Grace two more but the Vader Bomb misses. Grace hits a Jackhammer for another two but Slamovich slips out of the MuscleBuster and grabs a sleeper.
That’s shifted into a bulldog choke until Grave powers up and grabs the rope. Another driver drops Slamovich again and Grace slaps her in the face a few times. The Grace Driver gets two and Grace is stunned. She’s so stunned that Slamovich is able to hit an Air Raid Crash into the corner, setting up the Snow Plow for two more, as Grace gets a foot under the ropes. They go up top where Grace gets in a shot to the ribs, setting up something close to a super Grace Driver.
My thoughts: I was very surprised by this outcome as I felt Slamovich was going to take the title here. Grace is a great champion but it isn’t like she was on some amazing Roman Reigns type of run. Unless this is setting up a James vs. Grace showdown, I don’t really see the point to it but there we go. Impact had a great opportunity here and it should have been Slamovich’s big moment instead of Grace retaining.
We recap Josh Alexander vs. Eddie Edwards for the World Title. Alexander has run through everyone but now it’s time to face Edwards, who is a former World Champion and the head of Honor No More. Edwards is more than a bit over the top though and his wife isn’t happy with what he is doing. Now Edwards needs to win the title to make everything ok.
Impact World Championship: Josh Alexander vs. Eddie Edwards
A fight over a lockup to start as commentary breaks down the difference in the colour of their gear. Edwards hits a chop, which is enough to make Alexander double leg him down and hammer away. Alexander knocks him outside for a breather before they switch places.
A slingshot dive drops Alexander for a change but he’s right back up with the crossbody to the back to send them both outside again. Back in and Edwards snaps off an overhead belly to belly before sending him right back to the floor. One might think they are filling in time here. The floor mats are pulled back, which takes long enough for Alexander to fight back. A German suplex from the apron to the floor is blocked so Edwards hits a Diehard Driver on the exposed floor.
Back in the ring and Alexander seems to be favouring his leg and the Backpack Stunner takes him down. The half crab goes on but Alexander makes the rope. Back up and Alexander starts rolling some German suplexes, even going through the ropes and hitting another on the apron. That’s still not enough to break it up and they go outside with two more German suplexes, setting up another one on the ramp.
They head back inside with Alexander hitting a powerbomb onto the knee for two, only to have Eddie come back with Deep Six for two of his own. The Boston Knee Party is blocked and Alexander goes old school with a Styles Clash. Alexander puts on an ankle lock, which is broken without much trouble.
Edwards enziguris him off the top but the referee gets bumped. Cue Kenny King for a low blow before he is taken out by security, allowing a second referee to come in. The Boston Knee Party gets two on Alexander and a tiger driver gets the same, leaving both of them down. Alexander’s nose is busted but he comes up slugging, only to get rolled up for two. Another Boston Knee Party is blocked and the C4 Spike retains.
Post-match Honor No More is here for the beatdown. Cue Rich Swann and Heath for the save but the numbers take them out as well. Cue Bully Ray, who teases cashing in, but helps Alexander take out Honor No More. Ray holds up the title at Alexander and they stare each other down to end the show.
My thoughts: A good match but this never hit that next level as it was bouncing pretty hard off the ceiling above it. Edwards is a strong challenger to Alexander and just like in the previous match, it felt like he should have won here instead of coming up short. What’s the point of Honor No More if Edwards loses in the biggest match the team has had? Anyway, solid main event, but I’m not sure if it was worthy of the final spot on the biggest show of the year.
All in all, this was a great pay-per-view where we got to see every Impact Championship defended, which in my eyes (and in that of our resident "Belt Guy" Paul) is what you should come to expect from an event like this, regardless of what wrestling promotion it may be.
It was a great way to end another year of Impact and I can’t wait to see what happens next and what new storylines they can come up with, but I have to admit some of the outcomes of a couple matches were quite the surprise to me. They may have a reason behind it, so I guess we will have to just wait and see.
Thanks for reading, and I'll see you real (or wheel?) soon for another Wheely Good Impact Review!