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Impact Wrestling: No Surrender
by Samoa Rowe
February 13, 2019
Live (?) from Skyway Studios in Nashville, Tennessee. Our hosts are Matt Striker and D'Lo Brown.
Opening video package highlights Tommy Dreamer's journey from a 10 year old boy obsessed with wrestling to a 50 year old man who has given his entire life to the business. If given the chance, Dreamer would do it all over again, and now he's getting his last shot when he faces Rich Swann for the World title.
Dreamer arrives at the studio and feels inspired after watching Tom Brady win another Super Bowl.
Tenille Dashwood (with Kaleb with a K) and XXXL (Acey Romero and Larry D.) vs. Decay (Crazzy Steve, Black Taurus, and Rosemary)
Black Taurus is a Mexican minotaur, and he raises Decay's intimidation to a whole new level. The women start, and Tenille continues her portrayal of a clueless heel who has no idea when she's in over her head. She flees from Steve and tags in Larry, who gets totally outwrestled. Taurus and Romero slug it out. Taurus sends Acey out with a running forearm, and Decay tease a triple team dive. Kaleb trips Steve, and XXXL isolate Steve for some heat. Black Taurus gets an early hot tag and tears through XXXL, but Kaleb's distraction lures him away from Tenille. Larry wipes Taurus out with a suicida! Taurus recovers with a corkscrew dive onto Larry, and Steve follows suit. Romero teases a dive, but Rosemary blocks, so Tenille ambushes her from the side. Tenille considers a dive, but the guys almost forget to gather for her, so Romero powerbombs her onto them! Rosemary sprays green mist in Romero's face, and Taurus power slams Larry to win at 8:01. This was kind of clunky, but I like this rejuvenated version of Decay, **.
Matt Cardona and Eddie Edwards vs. Brian Myers and Hernandez
Myers is sporting an eye patch but Eddie is kind enough to ignore it and go for a headlock and armbar. Cardona tags, but Myers wants no part of his longtime partner. Hernandez is making his umpteenth comeback and actually looks small next to Cardona, and eats a dropkick. Hernandez recovers with a double clothesline, and NOW Myers is happy to put the boots to Edwards. Desperation belly to back suplex by Edwards, but Hernandez prevents a tag. Eddie makes him pay with a superplex. Hot tag to Cardona, who runs wild through Myers. Broski Boot only gets 2. Falcon Arrow by Myers also gets 2. Meanwhile, Hernandez blocks Eddie's dive and boxes his ears. Cardona hits a super rana on Myers, but Hernandez breaks the pin. Eddie tries another dive and takes down Hernandez. Myers flapjacks Cardona onto exposed buckles and nails a clothesline for the (upset?) pin at 9:55. Good energy here, solid match, **¾.
Winners: Brian Myers and Hernandez
Matt Hardy pumps up Private Party ahead of their Tag Team Championship match. Matt thinks they're better than the Good Brothers, and they'll take the belts to Dynamite and never bring them back to Impact!
Cody Deaner (with Eric Young and Joe Doering) vs. Jake Something
Cousin Jake is going by his indie "Jake Something" name now, which is a cool development in my book. Bell rings and Jake dumps Cody over the ropes. Eric scolds Cody, and he storms back in only to suffer a series of punches and an avalanche. Cody takes another timeout and Eric says Jake is not his family anymore. This inspires Cody to gain an edge, but Jake still knocks him down with a short lariat. Jake is tossed to ringside, and Young helps with a neckbreaker. Deaner wears Jake down like a good heel should. Jake appears to suffer a throat injury during the beatdown. Deaner eventually flies into Jake's sidewalk slam counter. Jake rallies with clubbing offense and hits a sitout slam. Jake hits a spear into the buckles for 2. Deaner answers with a neckbreaker for 2. Deaner knees the ribs and hits a sitout powerbomb variation. Jake knocks Deaner down and takes some time to hit a dive onto Young and Doering. This proves to be a red herring, as Jake clocks Deaner and wins at 10:22. Solid match, even if I don't find this feud to be all that interesting, and I like how Jake avoided falling into the “stupid babyface” role, **½.
Winner: Jake Something
Violent by Design put Jake through a table, so this feud isn't over by a longshot.
Eddie and Alisha Edwards wish Tommy Dreamer a happy birthday in his dressing room. Eddie puts Tommy over as the best professional wrestler he's ever known and believes he can win the big one tonight. Alisha bear hugs Tommy.
Triple Threat Revolver:
Trey Miguel vs. Blake Christian vs. Suicide vs. Chris Bey vs. Daivari vs. Josh Alexander vs. Willie Mack vs. Ace Austin (with Madman Fulton)
The rules state that only 3 guys can be in the ring at any one time, looks like it'll be elimination style. This sounds like it'll be hard to recap. Christian is reportedly WWE-bound, so this will probably be his last hurrah in Impact. Match starts with Trey (who did not join his fellow Rascalz in NXT), Suicide, and Christian. They start with the usual flippy “killing the business” work, and, well, it's spectacular. Miguel finishes Suicide with a grapevine ankle lock at 3:21. Chris Bey joins the match and squares off against Miguel. Bey fights off Christian. Blake counters stereo stomps and hits a double rana. Blake hits Miguel with a standing C4 at ringside! Blake hits Bey with a low 619, but Bey blocks a springboard 450. Bey finishes Blake with a Vertebreaker at 6:24! Daivari is the next entrant and laughs at Christian on his way to the ring. Daivari towers over Bey and dominates him. Miguel surprises Daivari with a Meteora and pins him at 8:21! Alexander is the next entrant and takes Miguel down with a spinebuster. Alexander hits Bey with an overhead belly to belly suplex. Alexander suplexes Bey while dropping Miguel off his back! Bey no-sells and rolls into an enziguri on Alexander, but springboards into Alexander's spinning Torture Lock slam! Alexander finishes Bey with an ankle lock at 11:20! Willie Mack joins the match and runs wild as if he'd gotten a hot tag. Double standing moonsault by Mack gets a good nearfall. Mack hits a Tower of Doom on Alexander and Miguel but can't pin either man. Mack hoists Alexander, but Miguel dives onto them and pins Mack at 15:50! Ace Austin comes in hot, but gets double teamed by Alexander and Miguel. Austin builds steam with roundhouse kicks and plants Miguel for 2. Miguel finds his second wind and hits Alexander with a poison rana and low cutter, but Austin breaks the pin. Ace and Trey slug it out. Ace gets the better of a diving sequence. Miguel goes on a burst of offense but cannot finish Ace. Alexander hoists both opponents on his shoulders for a big time DVD! Ace reverses Josh's powerbomb, but Josh answers with an ankle lock and sick backbreaker. Alexander finishes Ace with a double underhook piledriver at 22:09! This was an interesting twist on the gauntlet match formula, though I still strongly dislike guys getting rapidly eliminated, but the action was crisp throughout, and Alexander got to look like a true beast against his smaller opposition, ***¼.
Winner: Josh Alexander
Knockouts Tag Team Championship (Texas Tornado No DQ Match):
Fire N Flava © (Tasha Steelz and Kiera Hogan) vs. Nevaeh and Havok
Havok takes control of the opening brawl and throws Hogan by the hair. Hogan botches her escape of Havok's bonsai bomb, but Tasha assists with an attack on Nevaeh. The champs double team Nevaeh in the buckles but turn around to Havok's double clothesline. Fire N Flava do-si-do to counter stereo Irish whips, but Havok throws Tasha out to put Hogan in a 2 on 1 situation. Tasha returns with a chair, but Havok takes it by force. Hogan avoids a whip into the propped chair and saves Tasha with a series of kendo stick shots. Nevaeh takes a tandem suplex, and Havok saves her from getting pig piled. Steelz hits Nevaeh with a Codebreaker, but Havok hits a reverse double suplex. Havok dominates with chops and slaps, but misses a head of steam into the propped chair. Nevaeh brings in a steel handicap parking sign, but Steelz counters with a counter onto the weapon and wins at 9:17. This wasn't pretty, they stumbled through long portions of his noisy spectacle, **.
Winners and still Knockouts Tag Team Champions: Fire N Flava
Backstage interview with Impact World Champion Rich Swann, who is excited to be defending against 50 year old Tommy Dreamer, especially since Moose cannot interfere without suffering a suspension. He likes Dreamer and all, but will kick his teeth down his throat if necessary.
TJP © vs. Rohit Raju (with Mahabali Shera)
TJP might be the dumbest wrestler on Twitter, but he recently tricked Raju into defending the title against him by pretending to be Manik, resulting in a title change. Shera distracts TJP before the bell, and Rohit hits a sneaky suicida. Raju hits a running knee and wants the referee to count, but the bell still hasn't sounded. TJP hits a phantom dropkick to knock Rohit onto Shera and dives onto both men. TJP directs the fight beyond the rails, but Raju clotheslines him back to ringside. Raju reverses a suplex onto the steel ramp. Back to the ring, the bell finally sounds, and TJP hits a low dropkick to the knee. Raju counters a DDT into a Northern Lights Suplex for 2. TJP comes back with rolling suplexes, but Raju answers with a Fisherman suplex. Raju tosses TJP to ringside, where Shera ambushes with a rough chinlock. TJP rallies, stretching Raju's leg in the ropes, but then misses a Mamba Splash. TJP counters with knees to the face, but Raju blocks a GTS variation and boots the face. Roundhouse kick by TJP, but Raju hits a spinning slam for a good 2 count. TJP sprints into a superplex and rolls into a suplex and GTS, but Raju kicks out! Raju counters into a triangle choke, but TJP reverses into a heel hook. Raju counters into the sloppiest crossface you'll ever see. TJP escapes but runs into a double stomp, and Raju hits a big kick for a stellar nearfall. Springboard DDT by TJP and Mamba Splash finishes at 10:29! Despite some sloppy execution at times, they told a convincing story about TJP's title reign being in serious jeopardy, ***.
Winner and still X-Division Champion: TJP
Backstage interview with birthday boy, Tommy Dreamer (did you hear he's turning 50 today?). Tommy gets emotional while thinking about going to his first wrestling show with his late father at age 10, bringing his girlfriend to a show at age 17, and getting caned by Sandman at age 22. It all happened so fast. I think many of us can relate to the crushing passage of time.
Knockouts Champion Deonna Purrazzo, Kimber Lee, and Susan vs. Jordynne Grace, Jazz, and ODB
ODB is making another comeback and starts against Lee. ODB scores a shoulder block and tags in Grace, who locks up with Susan, who acts like she has no idea what she's doing in the ring. Susan dodges a head of steam, but Grace hits a back suplex. Susan flees into a tag, but Purrazzo gets decimated by Jazz. The heels get piled up at ringside for dives from Grace, ODB, and Jazz! Back to the ring, Purrazzo escapes Grace's torture rack, Lee assists from the apron, and Purrazzo manages to isolate Grace. Hot tag to ODB, who rips off Susan's business jacket. ODB serves up the “Dirty Dozen” and hits a Thesz press off the buckles. The match breaks down into chaos. Jazz gets thumbed in the eye by Susan and accidentally jabs Grace. Jazz puts Susan into an STF and wins at 8:48. Overwhelmingly average match, **¼.
Winners: Jazz, Jordynne Grace, and ODB
Impact Tag Team Championship:
The Good Brothers © (Karl Anderson and Doc Gallows) vs. James Storm and Chris Sabin vs. Private Party (Marq Quen and Isiah Kassidy, with Big Money Matt Hardy)
Storm locks up with Quen and forces him into the corner, then swats away a dropkick. Storm throws Quen away and meets Kassidy with a hard clothesline. Matt talks some sense into Private Party, and they return to the ring to take control of Sabin after a cheap shot. Sabin and Kassidy trade nearfalls and reach a stalemate. Sabin declares that Private Party doesn't need Hardy and demands a handshake, but Kassidy cheap shots again. Private Party swarm Sabin with quick tandem offense and then Quen works a chinlock. Anderson tags himself in but gets double teamed by Private Party. Gallows tags and finally manages to cut off Quen. The Good Brothers work Quen over for a while before Storm hot tags himself in. Private Party return to hit Sabin with the SSP/jawbreaker combo. They follow with a Stunner and tandem sliced bread on Storm for a good nearfall. All three teams duke it out as the match breaks down. Kassidy catches Gallows with a tornado DDT. Anderson spinebusters Sabin. Quen dropkicks Anderson. Storm hits Quen with the Eye of the Storm for 2. Gallows grabs a chair, and the ref doesn't see Hardy's Twist of Fate on Storm! Kassidy hits Storm with a Swanton Bomb, and Quen follows with a high SSP. Anderson throws Quen out to steal the pinfall on Storm at 13:52! Super fun match with lots of moving parts, ***½.
Winners and still Impact Tag Team Champions: The Good Brothers
Hardy chews Private Party out for losing.
Impact World Championship:
Rich Swann © vs. Tommy Dreamer
I don't really have high hopes for this one, as it looks like a mismatch on paper, and Dreamer has looked beyond spent on most of these Impact + specials. I would be delighted to be proven wrong. They shake hands and lock up. Dreamer holds his own in some mat wrestling! They lock knuckles and Dreamer hits a monkey flip. Swann misses a standing moonsault and then misses a spin kick. Fallaway slam by Dreamer and then a baseball slide dropkick. Dreamer misses a sledgehammer off the apron and Swann hits a flying knee. Dreamer answers with a DVD onto the floor. Dreamer dislocates a finger and gets checked on by the ringside doctor. Dreamer insists on continuing and catches Swann with a neckbreaker in the ropes. Swann resorts to targeting Tommy's bad finger to get back into the match. Dreamer dropkicks Swann's historically bad knee and follows with an inverted DDT. Swann survives a Cloverleaf, and clotheslines himself and Dreamer over the ropes for a rough landing. Swann blocks a piledriver on the ramp and nails a slingshot cutter. Superplex by Dreamer, but Swann reverses the cover. Swann blocks a catapult into the buckles, but Dreamer counters back with a cutter for 2! They trade pinning predicaments, and Swann locks on a deep armbar while manipulating the dislocated finger! Swann superkicks the knee and roundhouse kicks the head. Swann rips off the “I love you, I'm sorry” moment and superkicks Dreamer in the face. Swann misses a frog splash, Dreamer blocks Rings of Saturn, and Dreamer nails a Spicolli driver but Swann kicks out! Swann attacks the bad finger, kicks the head, and nails the Phoenix Splash to retain at 15:27. This wasn't exactly pretty, but they way overdelivered, with a good story surrounding Dreamer's dislocated finger, and some cool false finishes, ***½.
Winner and still Impact World Champion: Rich Swann
Dreamer puts the belt over Swann's shoulder, but Moose ruins the moment with a run-in. Moose destroys Swann's knee and spears Dreamer for good measure. Moose continues the assault of Swann with a chair, and then stands tall with both the Impact and TNA World titles.
Before the show cuts out, the New Japan logo and shots of Tokyo flash on the screen. The team of Juice Robinson and David Finlay appears on the screen! Looks like the Forbidden Door has been kicked wide open for Impact Wrestling!
Final Thoughts: Total middle of the road show, but I'm glad I caught it.
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