Impact Wrestling: United We Stand
April 4 2019
Back on the catch up train with Impact and it’s only 2h30m. I love you Garrett Kidney. Keep doing the good work brother. Josh Matthews & Don Callis on comms.
Jake Crist vs. Johnny Impact vs. Dante Fox vs. Pat Buck vs. Kotto Brazil vs. Jack Evans
Kotto Brazil is at another show! Fuck me, I’m laughing out loud at that. What show is he at? Is he a Kaiju? Johnny Impact isn’t on Team Impact. It’s literally his name! He comes in as the world champion but that’s not on the line here. Ultimate X is a weird match because it’s almost like a movie. Ace Austin, replacing Kaiju Kotto Brazil (I know he’s at MLW don’t @ me), decides to climb up the outside of the structure at one point and then just jumps into the ring. The match will make for a hell of a highlight reel as there are a bunch of crazy bumps happening but there’s very little connection between them. When they switch to going after the X it makes even less sense. Sometimes guys are literally lying in wait for a spot to happen and the camera quite happily captures them. This isn’t rocket science guys. Fox does some of the best spot work in the match. I’m glad he’s getting paid.
Ace Austin going after the "Falling off the Highest Thing on Mania Weekend" award. So far he's in the lead. pic.twitter.com/cOs5mubllr
— Arn (@ArnoldFurious) April 5, 2019
The match struggles with a lack of underlying storyline. Like, it’s a bunch of guys. Who am I routing for? Personally I want Fox to win but is that who the crowd want? There’s no audible support for anyone, just a reaction when someone falls off something. Ace Austin dies again and I’m starting to think that Kotto bailed when he found out about the structure. Impact pulls the X down after scuttling along the top of the rope. So now he has a shot at being a double champ.
Final Rating: ***1/4
Team Lucha Underground (Drago, Marty the Moth, Daga & Aerostar) vs Team Impact (Moose, Brian Cage, Eddie Edwards & Tommy Dreamer)
This is an eight man tag. LU come out together while Impact come out individually, which should be a booking red flag for ‘one of these guys is turning on the others’. Moose and Eddie Edwards have words backstage before the match so there’s your ‘misunderstanding’. Tommy Dreamer is the fourth man for Team Impact. Big reaction for Tommy and we’re in ECW country so we get The Chant. I’m over ECW and I was a big fan. That was twenty years ago. If you’re chanting for ECW you probably miss the Attitude Era too. Two of the luchadores here are working SSS16 weekend so if you’re a PROGRESS fan this is a good primer on those guys. Or it would be if the match didn’t focus on Moose and Dreamer. Some of the work in this is sloppy. At one point Cage goes to suplex Aerostar to the floor and literally lets go of him to check where he is. Suspend that disbelief just a little bit. Cage does feel more motivated than anyone else and some of his spots are tremendous.
Then Moose turns on Cage. Dreamer ‘hits’ him with a kendo stick but Marty catches Tommy for the pin. And the crowd goes mild.
Final Rating: **
“I’m taking those three ladies to Slam Town”
Impact Knockouts Championship
Taya Valkyrie (c) vs. Rosemary vs. Katie Forbes vs. Jordynne Grace
Impact has definitely gone the “Big Lads” route with their women’s division. I’m not convinced they should still be calling them “Knockouts” but Don Callis isn’t known for his woke takes. Forbes is debuting here and has a sexy stripper type gimmick. She’s not very good. Rosemary tries hard here but the crowd don’t seem interested. If anything this match shows how good Jordynne Grace is. She’s gotten over in Impact in a short space of time and it feels deserved. She has a lot of upside. Forbes doesn’t. She blows her big spot because she’s not strong enough. From there we get the partner DDT’s partner spot that I hate so much, only set up illogically in a four-way instead. With the match dying on its arse Su Yung arrives and brawls with Rosemary. Grace hits her finish on Forbes but Taya kicks her off the pin and takes it herself. This was pretty bad. Blame Katie Forbes. She was out of her depth here.
Final Rating: *3/4
LAX vs. Low-Ki & Ricky Martinez
It’s weird that Low-Ki is back in Impact. How long before he gets jobberitis and quits? Konan is in LAX’s corner so it feels like he’s going to turn heel. How many tag teams need a babyface manager? Speaking of managers; no Salina de la Renta? Boo Impact. BOO! Josh talks about how serious Low-Ki is. I’ve been on a car journey with Low-Ki, and not a short one, and I can confirm HE IS VERY SERIOUS. If anyone is reading this and wants the story ask me when you see me, or via DM or whatever. The match is supposed to be an angry blood feud but the crowd don’t buy into it and Ki is cosplaying as a Hitman so I find him hard to take seriously. The match is 12 minutes long and it’s all basically heatless, which means it drags. The only guy who can wake the crowd up is Ki, taking a sick bump on the apron and then coming flying off the top to break up a pin. Real throwback Ki action. Martinez has one purpose here; eat the pin. Konnan doesn’t turn, to my surprise, and we get out of here without resolving anything at all.
Final Rating: **1/4
Tessa Blanchard vs. Joey Ryan
Tessa brings the serious to counter Joey’s penile obsessed comedy. The match, and I can’t believe I’m writing this, revolves around Joey Ryan trying to get Tessa to touch his dick because it has magical powers. No means no, Joseph. “Look at this scumbag” – Don Callis takes exception to Joey and Josh Matthews switches to his WWE Owen Hart Voice when she hurts her arm. It’s a fucking comedy match guys. Blanchard tries hard here and throws herself into spots but as a match it can’t find a tone at all. The commentary reflects that as they don’t know how to call it. This is magnified when Ryan goes into his usual shtick after working over Tessa’s arm all match. I mean, what the fuck are you guys doing here? Tessa then comes back with the Magnum for the win. Boy did this ever suck.
Final Rating: *
Impact X-Division Championship
Rich Swann (c) vs. Flamita
This could be good and Flamita avoided death in his scary triple threat with Eagles and Arez at WrestleCon. There are many flippydos here. I am excited.
Swann slows it down after a thrilling start though, which is unfortunate because they don’t have a long time slot. When they turn up the pace it’s a really good little match. I feel like Flamita is capable of throwing these sprints together that have a bunch of cool moves but don’t really stick in the memory. He does do another Standing Spanish Fly, which I would not want to do after that goddamn Arez one at WrestleCon. And also because it sucks. Swann picks up the win with a Phoenix Splash. This felt entertaining but with a flat show overall and a dead crowd it didn’t feel special.
Final Rating: ***1/4
Monster’s Ball Match
Jimmy Havoc vs. Sami Callihan
Havoc just literally strolls out here with no music. Callihan comes out to his horrible dub with a guy screaming “OVE”. The match is a load of plunder shots. If you’ve seen one of these with Havoc you get the gist. Staple gun etc. Havoc bleeds. Callihan spits on his hand. Man, I’m trying to eat a fucking sandwich over here. Geez. I can hear the twat now; “well don’t eat during my matches blah blah blah”. Who died and made you the fucking major of food breaks, you Ohio fuck. I will eat when I goddamn please.
So back to the staples of the match; staples, lemons, paper cuts, salt. It’s after the watershed so anything goes. Sami takes it with a piledriver on a couple of chairs and poor Jimmy loses again. I honestly can’t remember the last time I saw him win a singles match.
Final Rating: ***
Impact Tag Team Championship
Lucha Bros (c) vs. Rob Van Dam & Sabu
They’ve kinda telegraphed that Lucha Bros are retaining as they even booked LAX vs. Lucha Bros for the next show. RVD & Sabu were having dream matches back when dream matches were a new thing in ECW. Paul Heyman knew what he had and booked them against anyone he could get. Ultimately RVD, rather than Sabu, became his go-to guy and it amazes me that Sabu is still walking let alone wrestling in 2019. It takes them a while to get going as Penta and RVD want to do posing. That leaves us ten minutes and I am fine with that.
A sample of how the Impact main is going. pic.twitter.com/9MuHPKkbRA
— Arn (@ArnoldFurious) April 5, 2019
It’s a wild ride for Rey Fenix. He tries very hard to bump whatever he’s presented with, god love him. This match otherwise serves as a prime example of how marijuana is bad for your memory in the long run. They bust out some of the hits, and some of them even connect. The double dive through the table is a great throwback and the fans enjoy the nostalgia kick. Fear Factor puts Sabu away. As an ECW fan this was cool to see a throwback match but it also showed how far wrestling has come since then. Sabu and RVD were both trendsetters and innovators but this showed how far out of their depth they are now. Fun to watch but not essential unless you’re a massive ECW mark.
Final Rating: **1/2
There’s certainly nothing essential here and if you’re cherry picking this weekend you can leave this tree alone. Cherries grow on trees right? There was some neat nostalgia in the main event and it boggled my mind that Sabu looked in better shape than RVD. A couple of decent matches on the undercard and a few misfires. Not a bad show but like I said, you can skip this unless you’re doing a completion mission like myself.