Aerostar def. Drago
Josh Mathews and Don Callis noted on commentary noted on commentary that these two are former Trios Champions together in Lucha Underground, but it would have been nice if they also acknowledged their history as partners and then as rivals in that promotion. However, I wasn't expecting it so I wasn't disappointed when they didn't. Nevertheless, this was a pretty good opening match. The crowd was hot for the action, though it was unfortunate that Aerostar botched a few moves down the stretch that caused the finish to feel slightly abrupt.
Eli Drake and Scott Steiner def. LAX to Win the Impact World Tag Team Championship
Steiner's performance at the IMPACT vs. Lucha Underground show was subpar, but he was wisely kept limited here and looked much better as a result. The match was decent on the whole. The story they told was that because Konnan wasn't at ringside for his boys (apparently he was kidnapped or something), LAX lost the titles. Drake and Steiner, who aren't a regular team, winning the straps may not be the worst thing considering how depleted IMPACT's tag team division is at the moment. They can freshen things up with a title run and hopefully get real competition (aside from LAX) in due time. Plus, their chemistry is getting better, so this could be fun.
Cage def. Dezmond Xavier, Trevor Lee, El Hijo del Fantasma, DJZ and Taiji Ishimori in a Six-Way Match
I thought it was odd that this contest consisted largely of X-Division competitors and then Cage, so the outcome was never in doubt for me. Despite that, this was extremely enjoyable. It started out slow (as it should have) before building to all-out chaos in the second half. Cage was beloved by the audience and came away from this looking like a star, and rightfully so because he's great. Everyone else shined at various points as well and the final few minutes were fantastic. I'd totally be down for a Cage vs. Trevor Lee one-on-one feud in the weeks following this show.
Taya Valkyrie def. Kiera Hogan
I don't blame the crowd for not caring about this whatsoever. It was fine for what it was, but the focus was never on what was going on inside the ring; rather, it was all about Tessa Blanchard. She's one of the best the independent scene has to offer these days, and while I wished she would have signed with NXT (which still could happen down the road), she is a quality addition to the Knockouts roster. This bout didn't have any storyline support whatsoever, so it was probably the perfect place to introduce Blanchard.
Impact X-Division Champion Matt Sydal def. Petey Williams
In the buildup to this match, Williams made mention of how Sydal was the first recipient of the Canadian Destroyer nearly a dozen years ago, so I loved how that played into his desire to beat Sydal to become X-Division Champion for the first time since 2008 here. They went the storytelling route here, which is different then your typical X-Division outing, but that made it a stronger matchup in my opinion. The pacing was on point, but it ended slightly sooner than I thought it would. Allowing it to go a bit longer would have given them more of a chance to make the nearfalls more suspenseful.
oVe def. Tommy Dreamer, Moose and Eddie Edwards in a House of Hardcore Match
I had my doubts coming into this contest because of Dreamer's involvement and IMPACT's tendency to go too over-the-top with these hardcore matches (especially since they're done so often in this company), but this was a real treat. Everyone played their roles well and they incorporated enough weapons to make the stipulation worthwhile. Above all else, the finish was well done with Sami Callihan pinning Dreamer for the victory. Edwards came across like a complete badass afterward by laying waste to pretty much everyone, including his wife (accidentally, of course), leading me to think he might turn heel in the not-so-distant future.
Impact Knockouts Champion Allie def. Su Yung
They weren't given a ton of time, but they maximized their minutes and produced a well-wrestled match. I've been digging the evolution of the Allie character over the last number of months and thus I especially appreciated her character work here. Yung was protected in defeat considering Allie beat her with a roll-up, and she kept her heat by severing ties with Braxton Sutter afterward. She didn't need him, anyway, so it was a logical development.
Pentagon Jr. def. Austin Aries and Fenix in a Three-Way Match to Win the Impact World Championship
The three-way these guys had on the IMPACT vs. Lucha Underground show earlier this month was a blast, but I knew it had the potential to be even better, and that was what this was. It was excellent from start to finish with Aries, Pentagon and Fenix having awesome chemistry and lighting it up as the match progressed. I figured Aries retaining the title was a lock, so I was shocked to see Pentagon pick up the win. That isn't a bad thing, however; if anything, it was a super cool way to close out the show. Pentagon is insanely over with the audience, and this must mean he'll be full-time with IMPACT at least for a little while, and that's tremendous news. Here's hoping Aries sticks around as well and this wasn't his swan song because he's done a ton to help get the company back on the map as well.
I was stunned Johnny Impact vs. Kongo Kong wasn't added to the card at the last minute given their current program, but perhaps that's a positive based off how mediocre their most recent outing was on IMPACT! Wrestling. At any rate, up until the main event, this pay-per-view lacked a truly memorable match that would get fans talking, but I thought the three-way Impact World title match achieved that. The rest of the lineup was solid and much better than most of IMPACT's past pay-per-view efforts, which will hopefully bode well for their future. The two title changes also helped make this a newsworthy night, so props to IMPACT for putting together a cohesive show that didn't feature anything offensively bad or below-average.
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