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Impact Wrestling: No Surrender
by Samoa Rowe
December 7, 2019
I turn on the how at 8:00 to a blank screen, with someone stating 'The problem is that Dayton, Ohio is a dead zone, not just for a signal." Oh boy, it's going to be one of THOSE shows, with technical glitches.
We have a picture! It's Impact World Champion Sami Callihan and his oVe cohorts in a hallway talking about their 15 years of hard work. Dayton and oVe are taking over EVERYthING!
From Dayton, Ohio. The venue is another small building, but it looks full to capacity. I might be wrong, but the ring looks a tad smaller than usual. Our hosts are Josh Mathews and Scott D'Amore.
Trey Miguel vs. Logan James vs. Tyler Matrix
Trey is from Toledo and gets a home state pop. Trey survives a 2 on 1 situation, but James then drives him into the buckles. Trey gets some space with a dropkick, but Matrix interrupts a dive and kicks the head. James slaps Matrix and rolls him down for a double stomp to the chest. They have a truce to knock Trey off the apron, but Matrix sneaks a rollup, and James kips up to clock Trey again and connect with a dive. Trey answers with a moonsault onto both guys and the cameraman. Trey hits a Northern Lights suplex while administering a leg submission. They slug it out and then Trey floats over James for a stiff dropkick to the back of the head. Matrix ambushes with a Falcon Arrow for 2. James murders Matrix with a dangerous looking double stomp to the head. Trey ties James on the top buckle for some free shots and lands a flying double knees to the head for the win at 8:03. Good showcase for Trey, but neither James or Matrix looked ready for primetime (Matrix might be badly hurt after that double stomp spot), **¼.
Winner: Trey Miguel
Madison Rayne gets a warm welcome from the Dayton fans as she grabs a microphone. She quickly turns it around, saying that once she left Dayton, she became rich and famous, and until recently had done well to stay away from these pigs. Unfortunately, as a locker room leader, she has to make the sacrifice of coming back to make an example out of Rosemary. Crowd chants "We want wrestling" and she tells them to shut up and let her finish. She orders the "music man" to play Rosemary's music to move things along. Rosemary arrives and Rayne tells her that as locker room, it's her authority to do whatever she wants, and could fire her if she wants. Rayne orders Rosemary to lay down for her.
Madison Rayne vs. Rosemary
Rosemary appears to lay down as ordered, but then bites Madison's foot. They trade shots in the corner, and Rosemary pulls the hair to apply a draping head scissors over the ropes. Rayne connects with more shots in the corner but Rosemary pops out for a flurry of offense, including sling blade for 2. Rayne escapes a crucifix pin, but Rosemary floats to her feet and hits a double underhook atomic drop variation for the win at 3:02. Fine for a short match, *½.
Jimmy Jacobs interviews Larry D. backstage, but the audio is way too low. Larry D. puts over his match against Michael Elgin as the opportunity of a lifetime. He feels he is one punch away from proving himself to the world. Elgin interrupts and brushes off the hometown guy.
"The Hook" Jeremiah makes an unscheduled appearance in the ring. The Dayton fans know who he is, but he introduces himself to the worldwide audience. He loves whiskey, women, and wrestling! He's cut off by Rhino's music and it looks like he's in trouble.
Rhino vs. Jeremiah
GORE and it's over at 0:09. Fine with me.
Clayton Gainz (spelling?) ambushes and we have another match!
Rhino vs. Clayton Gainz
Gainz enjoys an early advantage due to his cheap shot before the bell. He sure does know how to kick and punch. Gainz hits a running Vader Bomb for 2 and I mark out for that move every time. I'm less thrilled by his chinlock. Rhino escapes, but Gainz drives him down by the hair. Rhino rolls out of another Vader Bomb, but Gainz knees the face for a close nearfall. Rhino powers out and goes on a rampage, hitting a belly to belly suplex. The GORE ends it at 4:40. Not much to this, but I will love Rhino forever, **.
Ace Austin cuts a promo while lounging on a couch. His destiny is to continue reigning as X Division Champion, while Eddie Edwards' destiny is going through a table. Austin looks forward to more intimate time with Eddie's wife.
Michael Elgin vs. Larry D.
Larry is a local legend, and looks like a bruiser. They lock up and trade forearms. They have a shoulder block contest, with Elgin breaking it with an elbow shot. Larry answers with a hard whip and a particularly strong shoulder block. Elgin plays possum on the apron, but Larry cuts him off and tosses him across the ring. Elgin's enziguri sets up a rolling back senton and a huge suplex for 2. It takes all of Elgin's strength to hit a twisting brainbuster for 2. Larry counters with a backdrop and maneuvers into a spinebuster, but is too tired for a cover. Larry hits a suplex and splash for a good nearfall. Elgin hits desperate elbow shots and Larry hits a facebuster and stomp to the head for another good 2 count. Elgin hits a German, but Larry steps right up to answer with one of his own. Elgin counters with a cool snapmare and power slam! Fans chant "holy sh!t." Elgin's exploder suplex is good but LARRY KICKS OUT! Elgin is in a daze as he dishes out blows. Elgin's clothesline gets 2 and he can't believe it. Larry desperately hits a lariat for a heartbreaker of a 2 count. Larry runs into a pop-up powerbomb and Elgin dishes out a pair of lariats but LARRY KICKS OUT! A third Elgin lariat finally ends the hometown boy at 15:05! Tremendous power match. They really put over the story of the unknown Larry D. putting it all on the line to beat the notorious Elgin to make himself famous. This was worth the price of admission, ****.
Winner: Michael Elgin
Elgin basks in victory and leaves without showing any respect to Larry, who stumbles to his feet to a standing ovation (from everyone but the half asleep fans seated on the stage). Scott D'Amore gets into the ring and puts Larry over for overcoming numerous setbacks to kick ass anyway. D'Amore feels that Larry deserves a bigger stage and offers him an Impact Wrestling contract! They hug it out and the fans love it! It might be the Blue Moon, but my eyes well up a tad. Wrestling can be so joyful at times.
Taya Valkyrie sips an adult beverage and spits it in her valet's face. Jimmy Jacobs would like a word, and again, I can't hear what she's saying.
oVe (Dave and Jake Crist) vs. Desi Hit Squad (Rohit Raju and Mahabali Shera) vs. The Rascalz (Dez and Wentz)
Wentz starts against a Crist and mocks him whenever they get a break. Dez and the other Crist make tags and resume the feeling out process. Crist goes nuts with elaborate kicks. Raju gets a blind tag and overpowers Crist before eating an elbow. oVe hit a double slam on Raju, followed by a big boot. Jake's Northern Lights suplex gets 2. Shera's assist allows Raju's flatliner to get 2. Shera tags and destroys Jake with a clothesline. The Desi Hit Squad work Jake over for a bit. The Rascalz get a hot tag and go supernova on Shera. Wentz hits a swanton bomb and Dez hits a crazy corkscrew senton. Raju misses a double stomp save and hits Shera. oVe stop Raju's top rope rana and kill him with a spike piledriver for the win at 9:39. I spent most of this match marveling at how deep and pleasing Impact's roster has become, so that has to mean something, right? ***.
Hoss Fight Scramble:
Acey Romero vs. Crash Jaxon vs. Willie Mack vs. Madman Fulton vs. Brian Cage
Bell rings and everyone hesitates until Fulton knocks Mack down with a big boot. Ring empties so Mack and Cage can duke it out. Mack's sling blade sends Cage to ringside and Fulton returns with a tilt-a-whirl slam. Romero wakes up and dropkicks Fulton. Jaxon hits a glancing rana on Romero and uppercuts him into the corner. Cage buckle bombs Jaxon and hits a wild overhead German suplex. Mack catches Cage with a German and exploder. Fulton catches Willie in midair and nails a delayed vertical inverted suplex. Romero backdrops Fulton and sends him to ringside for an INSANE dive. Jaxon follows with a dive onto the field, as does Willie. Cage suplexes Jaxon onto everyone! Cage hits a sick powerslam on Romero and lariats Fulton. Jaxon Germans Cage off the second rope. Jaxon seems a bit small to be in a "hoss fight" but catches Romero with a drive-by knee. Fulton chokeslams Jaxon. Fulton bulldogs Cage holding Mack! Romero suplexes Fulton and power slams Cage. Jaxon kind of powerslams himself as Romero gets credit for it and a 2 count. Romero spinebusters Mack but Fulton big boots him. Cage and Romero knock out Fulton and collide with double clotheslines. Jaxon finds an opening but Mack plows through him with a spinning slam and leg drop. Mack delivers back sentons and drops Fulton for a standing moonsault for 2. Cage pump handle slams Mack, but Jaxon slams him on his head for a good 2 count. Romero's uranage is good. Fulton spins Romero with a clothesline, but Cage catches him with a dead lift suplex over the ropes! Mack hits the Stunner on Jaxon but Romero breaks it up! Romero saves Mack after Cage's slam. Romero hits a Black Hole Slam on Cage and heads to the top rope. They tease a Tower of Doom, but Fulton breaks it with powerbombs. Fulton walks the ropes to hit a flying elbow drop for the win on Romero at 16:29! This was a cool spotfest featuring mostly tall and overweight competitors, so it was something to behold, ***½.
Winner: Madman Fulton
Rich Swann is sitting on some steps backstage and cuts a promo that we cannot hear. I'm diggin this show, but the audio issues are a bummer.
Taya Valkyrie © (with John E. Bravo) vs. Jessica Havok
Taya is on her record setting 335th day as Knockouts Champion. Havok is hungry to play spoiler and throws Taya onto the mat. Havok backs Taya into the buckles and hits a superkick. Havok misses a running big boot ad gets stuck in the ropes, allowing Taya a series of free shots. Taya works a calf killer, but Havok kicks her off. Taya gains separation with a kick and dances. Havok sells a knee injury as she mounts a comeback. Taya blocks a Tombstone by kneeing the head! Bravo rushes the ring with a stuffed dog to distract Havok, and Taya hits a chair shot for the disqualification at 6:21. This was getting over nicely until the abrupt finish, **½.
Winner via DQ: Jessica Havok
Havok chokeslams Valkyrie for good measure after the bell. Moral victories are better than nothing.
X Division Champion Ace Austin vs. Eddie Edwards
Eddie goes right after Austin, who may or may not have "banged' his wife. Austin sprays mist in Eddie's face to get back into the brawl. Edwards hits a back suplex onto the ring frame and crotches him on the guard rail. A fan hands a chair to Eddie and he happily throws it into Austin's face. Eddie manages to set a table halfway up before Austin kips up off his back on the ring apron to avoid punishment. Austin leaps off the apron but Eddie throws the table at him, but it doesn't break so the match continues. Eddie misses a wild chair shot and Austin takes advantage with a roundhouse Van Daminator. Ace targets the eye and face with cane shots. Austin piles two tables on top of each other but returns to the ring for a vicious Edwards chair shot. Eddie sets up a table in the corner but walks into Austin's chinbreaker. Edwards reverses Austin into a chair in the buckles. Edwards drops Austin on the legs of an upside down ladder with a neckbreaker and the crowd rewards them with a "holy sh!t" chant! Eddie tries to suplex Austin over the ropes onto a table, but it's blocked. Eddie hits a wild chair shot to the face instead. Eddie gets a kendo stick but Austin leaps the ropes for a neckbreaker. Austin looks for a top rope rana, but Eddie crotches him on the buckles. Eddie attempts a super back suplex, but Eddie cuts him on the face with a playing card! Austin loads his taped wrist with a blade, but Eddie knocks him off the buckles. Edwards rebounds and knocks Austin off the top rope with a kendo stick and he goes crashing through a table at 16:34! Another good chapter in this hateful rivalry. They provided some cool spots but also got a lot of mileage out of teasing dangerous, yet undelivered bumps, ***½.
Winner: Eddie Edwards
Impact World Championship:
Sami Callihan © vs. Rich Swann
Realistically speaking, there is no way that Sami is losing his title before appearance as the big bad guy against Tessa Blanchard at Hard to Kill next month, so I'm looking for Swann to pull out all the stops to tease an unlikely upset. The Dayton fans like Sami, and Mathews and D'Amore acknowledge it rather than hide from it. Sami stalls for time anyway. They engage in a knuckle lock and Sami backs Swann over his knee for a break and a front headlock. Swann bounces out of a wristlock and hits a leg drop. More stalling from Sami. Opportunistic side headlock by Sami. Swann breaks, but Sami hits a side shoulder tackle and blows his nose on the challenger. Swann hates that and builds momentum with quick attacks, including a trio of somersault sentons off the apron. They trade chops at ringside and Callihan voluntarily opens his chest protector and dares Swann to him him. Sami spits in his hand (and eats it) before chopping Swann, who fires back to knock him off his feet. Swann applies a cravat and kicks the back of the head. Sami answers with a wild backdrop counter and chokes him with his wrist tape. Sami disgusts the fans by spitting onto his own face and eating it. CUE THE CHINLOCK! Swann powers out and delivers hard open hand shots and elbows. Sami answers with a pump kick and spits at Swann's face. Swann wipes Sami's spit off and eats it (ewww) and spits it back at the champ. Somersault clothesline by Swann. They trade crawling headbutts and slug their back back to their feet. Swann kicks the leg and nails a roundhouse kick to the head for a good 2 count. Sami counters with a Death Valley Driver for 2! Swann gets a scary close nearfall and a standing moonsault for another believable 2 count. Callihan answers with a snap German suplex and brainbuster, but Swann kicks out! Sami's sitout powerbomb is good but Swann kicks out again! Cue the "This is awesome" chants. Sami teases a top rope piledriver but Swann reverses into a super rana! Swann's flying elbow only gets 2. They duke it out on the apron until Sami hits a disgusting piledriver onto the apron. Sami hits another piledriver in the ring, but SWANN KICKS OUT! Swann blocks Sami on the top rope via biting and hits a Phoenix Splash for an unbelievable nearfall. Swann tries another, but Sami pushes the ref into the ropes. Callihan's TOP ROPE PILEDRIVER finishes it at 25:05! They kept a deliberate pace and shifted into second and then third gear right when they needed to, delivering well-earned false finishes and creating a sense of drama when it would be easy to say that Callihan was obviously retaining, ****¼.
Winner and still Impact Wrestling Champion: Sami Callihan
Final Thoughts: This was easily the best Impact Plus special since I started watching four months ago. This was a legitimately great show that is worth your time.
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