This is the penultimate edition of Impact Wrestling before Bound for Glory next weekend. This episode is once again from Sam’s Town Live in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Ace Austin came out wearing an “Ace Austin 3:16” shirt with the line “I Just Banged Your Wife” on the back of it. He proceeded to make out with a woman in the front row. This felt like a one-note joke at the expense of the story where the audience didn’t believe Austin was being sincere with Alisha Edwards, but she wasn’t sure, and this eliminated any plausible deniability about Austin’s motives.
ACE AUSTIN VS EDDIE EDWARDS
The winner will be added to the ladder match for the X Division title at Bound for Glory.
Edwards hit Austin with a back suplex from the top turnbuckle when Reno Scum came down to the ring. Two weeks ago, Reno Scum drugged Edwards at the wedding and are working with Austin.
Austin kicked out from a Blue Thunder Bomb, but this match had zero heat other than the two plants in the front row cheering Austin.
Edwards had the match won after hitting the Boston Knee Party, but the referee was pulled to the floor by Reno Scum. The audience chanted for Edwards and he brought out the kendo stick to attack Reno Scum with.
Austin hit The Fold (a running blockbuster) and Edwards kicked out of it. Austin put metal into his brace on the wrist and smashed Edwards with it behind the referee’s back to win.
WINNER: Ace Austin at 10:47
The story was Edwards caused the wrist injury necessitating the brace and then Austin used it to his advantage.
For a match that’s been built for a long time, the audience largely checked out and it hurt the match significantly. Don Callis put it over as the biggest win of Austin’s career.
Taya Valkyrie was confronted by Rosemary backstage with Rosemary telling her that Jessicka Havok is going to tear her apart tonight.
THE RASCALZ VS DESI HIT SQUAD (Mahabali Shear, Raj Singh & Rohit Raju)
Wentz and Dez went for suicide dives and both were caught by Shera and dropped them onto the edge of the apron. Trey followed with a tornillo onto the Desi Hit Squad on the floor.
In the ring, they hit Shera with triple superkicks, and he played a monster. Shera kicked the other away and slammed Wentz with the World’s Strongest Slam and dumped Raj Singh on top for the pin.
WINNERS: Desi Hit Squad at 7:46
Throughout the match, they were promoting The Rascalz facing Dr. Wagner Jr. and two partners at the pay-per-view yet this whole match was designed for Mahabali Shera to receive the spotlight and The Rascalz were just the set-up guys.
Katie Forbes showed up and tossed her keys to Jordynne Grace thinking she was the valet. Grace said she would kick her ass, so Forbes started twerking and told Grace she would need larger boots.
TAYA VALKYRIE VS JESSICKA HAVOK FOR THE KNOCKOUT’S TITLE
Tenille Dashwood joined Josh Mathews and Don Callis on commentary.
Havok was dominating Valkyrie culminating with a chokeslam when Johnny Bravo yanked the referee to the floor and the bell was called for the disqualification.
WINNER: Jessicka Havok by DQ at 5:12
Havok attacked Bravo and hit him with a big boot and hit him with a chokeslam. Valkyrie jumped Havok and hit her with the Knockout’s title. This prompted Dashwood to run in with these giant heels on to attack Valkyrie.
Whether the audience was not mic’d well, or it was just not a lively audience, there was no life to the in-ring portions.
oVe did a promo with Sami Callihan admonishing Brian Cage for attacking a fan last week. He called Cage an animal and tonight they take care of Tessa Blanchard and Daga.
The North was interviewed and made light of Konnan being attacked last week. They were approached by Rich Swann and Willie Mack. Swann brought up that he and Mack beat Page and Matt Sydal (who wasn’t named) at last year’s show. Rhino walked in with Rob Van Dam and they’ve been in line since the others were born.
MOOSE VS STEPHAN BONNAR
Moose had Frank Trigg in his corner and joined Mathews and Callis on commentary.
Moose got the better of Bonnar and drilled him with body shots and other strikes. Bonnar hit a spinning heel kick that he got off his feet for, which was followed by a belly-to-belly suplex.
Bonnar got cut by the side of his right eye and was bleeding. Bonnar hit a spine buster and then climbed to the top but was knocked off balance when Moose sent the referee into the ropes for the disqualification.
WINNER: Stephan Bonnar by DQ at 4:25
This wasn’t good at all and had a lame finish on top of it. The cut Bonnar suffered was big and they zoomed in on the cut, which produced a lot of blood.
Moose grabbed a chair when Ken Shamrock ran down for the save. Shamrock attacked him with punches, a dropkick and belly-to-belly suplex before applying the ankle lock. Bonnar wouldn’t let Trigg stop it as Moose tapped. Shamrock was very slow with the punching sequence and I think everyone realizes the match is best served in a short dose and not go long.
KATIE FORBES VS JORDYNNE GRACE
Forbes started twerking while Grace had head scissors applied. Forbes hit a cartwheel back elbow into the corner and backed into Grace with her ass, but Grace grabbed her by the trunks. Grace hit the running elbows, a sliding elbow, and Vader Bomb for a two-count.
Forbes returned with a tornado DDT from the turnbuckle, lifted Grace on her shoulder, which Grace escaped and hit the Grace Driver to win the match.
WINNER: Jordynne Grace at 5:40
The idea was that Forbes can wrestle with someone the level of Grace as that was the emphasis from Mathews and Callis. It was fine for a short match.
Daga told Tessa Blanchard that he can fight his own battle, Blanchard said oVe is her battle and at Bound for Glory both will be fighting their own battle as they are in the ladder match together.
Fallah Bahh was stretching and TJP appeared with donuts. TJP sat on his back eating while Bahh did push-ups. Bahh needed a break but TJP got onto his back for squats. Next week, Bahh is facing Michael Elgin.
JAKE CRIST & MADMAN FULTON VS TESSA BLANCHARD & DAGA
The size difference between Fulton and Blanchard told the story effectively as they had a staredown. Blanchard ducked a clothesline and dove to the floor onto Jake Crist. Blanchard and Daga double-teamed to clothesline Fulton to the floor, although he remained on his feet.
Dave Crist attacked Daga on the floor with the referee dealing with Blanchard.
They had the advantage of Daga until he hit Fulton with a cutter and tagged Blanchard. She fired up on all the oVe members including a tilt-a-whirl DDT on Jake, Fulton saved and they attacked Fulton with kicks and a Blanchard ‘rana sent him to the floor.
Blanchard came off the top with Magnum onto Jake and pinned the X Division champion.
WINNERS: Tessa Blanchard (pinned Jake Crist) & Daga at 5:30
On a show that wasn’t high on the wrestling quality, this was the best match on the show. Blanchard has something incredibly special and consistently comes off as the top star, male or female, in the company.
oVe attacked Blanchard and Daga after the match and they were left laying on the floor.
A car arrived outside with Brian Cage storming into the building. In a funny cameo, Chris Bey (who was on last week’s episode) was standing backstage and on Friday night, he had just appeared on 205 Live an hour before.
oVe stopped Brian Cage, he was held as Callihan kicked him low. They handcuffed Cage to the rope and was about to get hit with Callihan’s bat when Melissa Santos ran down with a bandage on her head. Callihan was about to leave and then grabbed Santos and hit her with a piledriver. Callis called Callihan “a piece of shit” as Cage screamed while handcuffed and called for help to end the show.,
Up until the main event, I thought this was a disappointing episode so close to the pay-per-view and my enjoyment of the show was definitely hampered by the lack of reaction from this audience in Las Vegas.
The closing angle put more heat on Sami Callihan and it’s best an effective build for the main event of the pay-per-view. It’s a minor nitpick, but just because it’s Brian Cage, it’s hard to see him subdued by handcuffs and not get the big monster spot of breaking free. For any other babyface, I wouldn’t think twice but for “The Machine” it seemed hard to buy.
Moose and Stephan Bonnar didn’t click for me with Bonnar’s limitations and the physicality between Moose and Ken Shamrock may have been better to save for the match because it showed Shamrock’s age and trying to do his routine from 20 years ago with the belly-to-belly suplex and striking flurry. Moose is doing very good in the role of the bully heel and I think this program, overall, is a step forward in his career. Frank Trigg was very good as the mouthpiece on commentary, as well.
The disqualifications on the show felt needless and just an excuse to avoid beating anyone, so I didn’t like that. As a second-to-final show before the pay-per-view, I didn’t feel this was a strong advancement of the stories minus the closing angle with oVe and Brian Cage.