Bound For Glory 2018, Impacts Biggest Show is The Year featuring one damn stacked card as far as I’m concerned.
We are live from The Melrose Ballroom in New York! The venue looks bad, not anything on Impacts part I just don’t like this venue, it’s a narrow multi story building, rather than having a sea of people it’s just walls of faces and that’s a look I don’t much enjoy, pure personal opinion here. The guard rails are quite close to the ring, which I’m reading online is because they had a bigger attendance then they planned for and had to adjust the seating plan, which I hope is true because more paying attendees is nothing but a good thing.
We kick off the show with Matt Sydal and Ethan Page vs. Rich Swann and Willie Mac.
Basic tag match stuff here, heels work over Swann until the hot tag Mack as he unloads on Sydal and Page as he brings the crowd to life to more chants of ‘return of Mack!’ Sydal sets Swann up on the top for a rana which launches Swann into Page for what looks like a powerbomb but Swann counters into a Rana for a beautiful spot. The fours men trade moves, Mack and Page are both taken out leaving Sydal and Swann to work a sequence with builds to a Pheonix Splash from Swann to Sydal for the win.
Post match Mack picks out two members from the crowd who are upgraded to front row seats, courtesy of the shows sponser Comda.com. Nothing special but the match was everything it needed it to be to get the show rolling!
Josh Matthews and Don Callis plug their sponser Comda.com who have provided a coffee mug, martini shaker and glow in the dark pens for the boys. They hype what’s to come and detail the drama surrounding the Impact Title Match tonight with Johnny Impact and wife Taya on TMZ discussing Austin Aries tweets and show the two brawling last night at Abyss’ Hall of Fame induction after Aries claimed Johnny was trying to turn things into a media spotlight for himself. Whether you wanna believe it’s an angle or not, it’s effective for building this match as more than just a title match.
We get a cut backstage as Konnan has been attacked but tells his boys to go on without him.
Eli Drake makes his entrance as it’s time for his open challenge to any New Yorker! I’ve had it pointed out to me how crazy similar Drakes promos are to The Rocks and now that the comparison has been made it’s all I can see. Drake cuts his promo, trashing New York as the crowd chant for Y2J before James Ellsworth makes his debut and races to the ring! Ellsworth says he’s not from New York but he’s here and ready to fight, to which the crowd chant ‘fuck you Ellsworth’. The two trade some barbs before Ellsworth cheap shots Drake kick starting the match. The two have a quick little match, Drake really making quick work of Ellsworth. Drake grabs the mic and remarks he asked for the best, not trash, he asked for Hall of Fame material; que Abyss’ music. Small brawl before Abyss hits a Black Hole Slam. The Monster fetches a table as the crowd cheers ‘hall of famer’ which is nice. Drake is put through the table with a chokeslam. Segment was a nice little spot for Abyss but overall it feels like a waste of such a great talent like Eli.
We get a video package hyping up Taya Valkyrie vs Tessa Blanchard as it’s time for the Knockouts Title Match!
The girls start off with some fast paced, back and worth action. A spear from Taya throws things in the challenges favour until a neckbreaker on the apron puts the Champion in charge. Taya stays alive, hitting Tessa with a German suplex and following it up with some knees in the corner before setting Tessa up on the top rope and connecting with a superplex floatover into a guillotine choke hold. Tessa shows off her strength, deadlifting Taya and ramming her into the corner and hitting a suplex, leaving both woman down. On there knees the two trade blows with the crowd hot for both woman. Tessa attempts the Buzzsaw DDT but Taya counters into a TKO for a close 2. Taya tried for The Road To Valhalla (sick finisher name) but Tessa counters into a cutter for a near fall of her own. Tess climbs to the top and dives at Taya and right into a choke slam. Taya hits a moonsault but only manages a two. Taya tries a few submissions but the champ gets to ropes, Taya drags Tessa back to the centre of the ring but Tessa clings to the ring apron, Taya hits The Road To Valhalla and covers the champion but the referee is too busy fixing the ring apron and gets to the pin late and Tessa kicks out at two. Taya attempts another Road To Valhalla but Tessa escapes and hits the Buzzsaw DDT but its not enough as Taya kicks out just before 3. Taya tries to stay in the contest but it’s not long before Tessa connects with The Flying Codebreaker and picks up the victory, retaining the title.
Real good match, would have liked to see the girls get some more time but they took what they had and maximised their minutes. Hopefully this isn’t it for this feud!
An interview with Moose leads us into a hype package for his match with Eddie Edward that recaps Eddies quest to reclaim The Impact Title and Moose’s heel turn, costing Eddie his chance at the title and his alignment with Aries. A solid development for both these guys, Eddie has a much more clear character now and Moose as a heel is really working for me and looks much more of a natural fit for him.
The boys trade some heavy strikes, Eddie takes Moose down with a knee and goes to fetch his Kendo Stick, Kenny, from ringside but is attacked by Killer Cross, ending the match. Moose and Cross look to attack Eddie but Tommy Dreamer makes the save. Dreamer grabs the mic and channels his inner Teddy Long as this is now a tag team match. Eddie dives on the heels and we are off. The faces work over the heels until a drop kick from Moose knocks Eddie off the top rope, to the outside and Dreamer having his head slammed into the guard rail, courtesy of Cross flips the tables. Moose lines up Eddie on the outside but Eddie counters, suplexing Moose. Commentary remarks that a New York Giants Player in the crowd shoved Moose but the camera missed it. With Moose down Eddie returns to the ring and the faces take control of Cross, Eddie hits a top rope rana and goes for the cover but Moose slides in for the save. It comes down to Moose and Eddie as the two go back to trading shots, then chops, then kicks and then a Blue Thunder Bomb from Eddie takes both men down and clears the ring for Cross and Dreamer to work a spot. Cross takes Dreamer out, Eddie jumps back in and Cross charges for him but Eddie drops the ropes and across tumbles outside. Eddie races for Moose and right into a pop up powerbomb. Moose takes the kendo and looks to strike Eddie but Eddie counters into a school boy and gets the win! The heels waste no time and immediately attack Eddie, powerbombing him on the apron before celebrating. Match was a mess, really just the four men brawling about the ring and ringside areas. Also being hurt by what I think was a small camera crew or a slow production crew that couldn’t cover the action. Step back after the woman went out and killed it.
Next up, OvE against Brian Cage and The Lucha Brothers in an OvE Rules Match as a very Shield like promo from OvE leads us into a hype package for the match. These boys waste no time just throwing absolutely everything at one another. Sling blades, dives, lungblowers, and suplexes for all. There is no description that could really give this one any justice, this was a spot fest in the best way possible. It was very reminiscent of the trios matches in Lucha Underground, not surprising given who is involved of course. Don’t let any of that come across as a negative in anyway shape or form, this was all thumbs up from me, I love this kinda bombastic mayhem. The Lucha Brothers are taken out and OvE connect with The All Seeing Eye On Cage but he kicks out at 1! The Machine! OvE waste no time and just assault Cage with kicks to the head, then another All Seeing Eye and finally a Piledriver from Callihan. Callihan covers Cage and gets the 1-2-3! Sami becomes the first person to pin Cage since he debuted in Impact. Crazy match, with a finish I really like. Not only does Cage go down still looking like an absolute monster but Sami looks great being the first to pin Cage. Bonus points to OvE for coordinating all their gear to match. Coal for Fenix as Pentagón and Cage were matching but Fenix had to go out and be the odd one out.
Backstage Aries cuts a tremendous program, explaining how Impact was on life support when he came back and he has rebuilt it. However Johnny Impact just comes back when his schedule fits. Aries quickly brings up how personal things have become, says he’s going to bring his boys to ringside because he doesn’t trust Johnny. He insists Johnny bring Taya to ringside so she’s there to watch as he exposes Johnny. Seriously, go watch this promo. Great stuff from Aries.
King and LAX are backstage, King talks about the street and being from the streets and how these street are their streets and we cut to a package for the upcoming Tag Title Match Match. I’m not a fan of the gangster, street feud they’ve been doing, it has become more about King and Konnan and it feels that LAX and The OGs are just kind here. I’m hyped for the match, I just can’t get into this feud it feels like it’s jumped the shark since they had the little kid getting ran over.
The ringside area has been littered with weapons and the ring has been stripped of turnbuckle pads, canvas and any protective padding, leaving just the bare wooden boards. It’s a cool visual that gives this whole ‘Concrete Jungle Match’ a distinct feel. With nothing holding them down or together, the boards are quick to begin shifting and moving, making things a little awkward for the guys to work around. We are maybe 30 seconds in and Hernandez has already been busted open, I believe the hard way. The Champions start strong but the numbers game catches up to them as The OGs take control. Ortiz fires up but is but through a table by Hernandez, quickly neutralising him. Santana fairs better, managing to build some offence against their challengers. LAX eventually manage to take control, with Homicide and King taken out, Hernandez is superplexed by The Champions onto the exposed wooden boards to the shouts of ‘holy shit!’
Konnan makes his way out and sends King through table, the champions follow it up by hitting The Street Sweeper on King to score the victory.
We are shown a recap of Allie making a deal with James Mitchell to get her into the undead realm, which thankfully has cameras so we can see what transpired. Allie moves about a creepy house, being stalked and attacked by bridesmaids, which she murders with a little hatchet, accompanied by awful C Movie blood effects and camera splatter, it’s amazing. Su Yung appears and the two tussle, Allie looks to be done for but a trusty hatchet to the neck takes out Yung. Allie rescues Kiera Hogan and looks to escape but James Mitchell reveals he never said he’d get them out. All looks to be lost as Su Yung staggers in and the bridesmaid close in but Rosemary appears to make the save! As Allie and Hogan escape back to the normal world Rosemary keeps Yung distracted as the two battle with awful CGI Hand Power Beams!!
In the normal world Hogan tells Allie it’s okay but Allies voice goes full demon as she tells her that it is not.
This was just, like beyond Final Deletion Cringey but it’s why I love it. You may not and I could completely see why!
We get commentary plugging the next time Impact will be on PPV and its for a homecoming to The Asylum! January 6th, The Homecoming love from Nashville.
Johnny Impact promo time, telling Aries that his claim that he carries the company is an insult to him and everyone else that works their ass off for the company and promises to take the title tonight.
We get a very good hype package setting the stage for our Main Event as Austin Aries defends his Impact World Title against Johnny Impact. The crowd is 50/50 for both men as we open with duelling chants for both men. Open with some ground game, Aries aggressively wrestling around Johnny Impact. The go nose to nose, talking trash and as Aries throws the first punch Johnny just unloads on Aries, this match quickly taking on the look of just a fist fight. Johnny clothesline’s Aries to the outside and follows it up with a dive and whip onto the guard rail. With a kick to the gut, Aries takes control and attempts to throw Johnny into the railing, but Johnny counters. Aries chargers Johnny but Johnny leaps frogs, planting one foot on the ring apron and one of the guard rail on the way down before landing a moonsault on Aries. B E A U T I FU L! Johnny throws Aries in the ring and attempts a springboard but Aries takes him out and takes control of this match with a dive of his own to the outside. Aries works over Impact as he trash talks Taya on the outside. Impact begins fighting back, Aries trash talking his wife bringing him to life. He attempts the springboard again and again Aries stops him, this time knocking him to the outside. Aries attempts a dive but Johnny meets him with a knee to the face. Third times the charm as Johnny finally lands his Springboard Corkscrew Forearm. Johnny looks for a Spanish fly and a Starship Pain at different points but both times Aries manages to escape. The Champion looks to go high as he climbs to the top rope but Johnny meets him and this time connects with the Spanish Fly for a near fall. Johnny looks for The Countdown to Impact but Aries escapes to the outside. With Both men on the apron the trade strikes until Aries connects with a deadly looking Death Valley Driver in the apron, sending Impact crashing into that close guardrail as well. Aries rolls Impact inside and hits a 450 Splash but Impact still kicks out just in time! Aries looks for his rolling elbow but Impact meets him with not one but two superkicks and then Starship Pain! The cover but Aries grabs hold of the rope just in time to a chorus of boos. Impact looks for a Brain Buster but Aries escapes and hits the rolling elbow, then the drop kick in the corner and then his own Brain Buster! 1-2-and Impact gets his foot on the rope! Taya takes her turn at talking trash st Aries, distracting him as Impact backslides Aries but Aries rolls through and locks in The Last Chancery. Impact crawls and gets the ropes. The two exchange strikes again and Aries ducks and dives out on Taya on the outside. Impact quickly chases down Aries and begins to lay into him, throwing him back in the ring and hitting Brain Buster before connecting with the second Starship Pain for the win and we have a new Impact World Champion! Almost the moment the bell rings, Aries gets to his feet leaving seemingly everyone confused. He looks to shout something to someone in the crowd before flipping off the crowd and exiting. It definitely appears there’s something up here... I really enjoy both these guys and really enjoyed this, it felt a little flat at the start. What I’m assuming was meant to be the two men really jostling for control was just coming across looking like a lot of miscommunication. I obviously can only assume. The majority of the match was good with the closing sequences being great. I’m excited for a rematch for the two and feel the title switch was perfect here. I hope whatever went on with Aries at the end here wasn’t something too serious or any heat between the guys. Time will only tell! As for now, we close the show with Impact and Taya celebrating in the ring.
Solid show, much more of a complete feeling show than Slammiversary and definitely another step in the right direction for the rebuilding of Impact! I’m really enjoying the talent they’re putting out there and a lot of what they’re doing with stories and what have you of late. I’d love to see LAX move on from The OGs now and begin a feud with a fresh new team as I feel that’s the only place things are feeling a little stagnant. I’m super into this Callihan vs Cage feud we’ve set up and the dominant force Tessa is built as in the Knockouts Division. I love Johnny Impact as the World Champion and I’m keen to see what we get going into Homecoming!