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Cazer’s Impact Wrestling Review 5.12.22

May 12, 2022 | Posted by Andrew Cazer
Eric Young Impact Wrestling Image Credit: Impact Wrestling
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Cazer’s Impact Wrestling Review 5.12.22  

Happy Thursday folks! We’re fresh off a banger of an Impact Plus live event in Under Siege and now Impact looks to begin building towards Slammiversary. Seriously if you missed Under Siege you should check it out it was a very good show. Tonight looks to be very good as well as we build to Slammiversary, Chris Bey and Kenny King will face off in an Ultimate X Qualifying Match. I’m a fan of the Ultimate X match type but it doesn’t have that big feel to me it once did, hopefully with a build like this creating some importance for the qualifiers will allow me to get hype once again. We will also find out who is challenging for the Impact World Title at Slammiversary as Impact will hold a Gauntlet for the Gold match, certainly something I can get behind for a number of reasons. Speaking of the Impact World Champion, after retaining over Ishii at Under Siege, Josh Alexander will now team with Ishii to take on Jay White and El Phantasmo. Can Josh and Ishii work well enough together after beating each other senseless on Saturday to pick up a win over an established Bullet Club duo? We have all this and more set for tonight’s Impact so I have a good feeling it’ll be a good one. Let’s get to it!

– Tom and Rehwoldt open the show and tell us that tonight’s main event will feature the return of the gauntlet for the gold as we recap just what that match is. A 20 person gauntlet style match up for a change at the Impact World Championship. We see Moose, Sabin, Morrisey, Edwards, Shark Boy and others speak on their desire to win the Gauntlet. This isn’t too wild in terms of production quality but it is very well done. I’m even more excited for the gauntlet than I was initially. I’ll note i’m unfamiliar with the history of this match so it may not be under traditional gauntlet rules and could just be a battle royal.

Kenny King vs. Chris Bey

Hannifan and Rehwoldt are interrupted by King making his entrance, they return to the commentary table and are joined by none other than Maria Kanellis. Hannifan wishing a belated mothers day because this was filmed on Mother’s Day made me laugh for no real reason. Bullet Club and Honor No More are banned and this is probably for the best after both of these teams continuously lost control during their tag team match at Under Siege. Lockup and King takes control early, Bey counters out momentarily but King regains control with a headlock. Bey to his feet and fights free but King uses the dreadlocks to pull Bey back into the hold. Bey counters into a wristlock but King counters with an armdrag, Bey with an armdrag of his own. King sends Bey into the ropes he ducks a kick and drops King with a kick of his own. King slides to the outside to regroup, Bey teases a dive but King moves just in time prompting Bey to wait. Bey with a kick to King as he heads outside and lays into him with strikes before sending him back into the ring. King slides right back out and hits Bey with a forearm shot. Bey to the inside but he catches King with a dive to the outside. Both men back inside, Bey dives into the corner but misses King, Bey to the middle rope but King pulls his leg out from under him dropping him back first on the top turnbuckle. King lifts Bey up into a full nelson but Bey counters into a roll up. King into the ropes but Bey catches him with an elbow, King counters with an elbow of his own. King with a powerslam on Bey and covers for a two count. King with another scoopslam and follows with a springboard legdrop but Bey moves. King charges Bey in the corner again Bey moves and lays into King with a combination of strikes. Bey catches King with a jumping uppercut in the corner. Bey to the top with a diving forearm, he lifts King onto his shoulders and drops him, Bey Covers for a two. King catches Bey hits him with the chin checker and then a tigerdriver, King covers for a two count but Bey kicks out. Bey goes to springboard off the ropes, King pulls the middle rope from under him dropping Bey right onto the back of his head. Ouch. King covers and would’ve won but he used the ropes and was caught so he only gets a two count. Bey with a springboard DDT, he covers King for a two count. Bey with a kick to the head of King, he goes for art of finesse but King counters. Bey shoves King off and hits him with a sliced bread. Bey heads to the top but Maria distracts him. King catches Bey with a leaping uppercut and goes for a superplex, Bey shoves King off the top rope but he does a moonsault lands on his feet and nails Bey with a kick. King hits Bey with the Royal Flush and covers for the victory in 8:27.
Rating: ***3/4
Review: This was a lot of fun between two very good wrestlers who have an obvious history. Teacher vs. student and of course they delivered a solid match. I love both guys and wasn’t sure who I would expect to win, Bey shines in Ultimate X matches but King makes a lot of sense. Again I like that they’re booking qualifying matches and as much as i’d like Bey in I hope they stay true to qualifying and keep him out. 

– Alisha Edwards is backstage knocking on Gisele’s door telling her they’re next. Shaw comes out and asks why she’s so bossy doesn’t she know you can’t rush perfection? Alisha says she knows but they are next and says chop chop as they make their way to the ring.

Impact Knockouts Tag Team Championship
Alisha Edwards & Gisele Shaw vs. The Influence

After Shaw picked up a surprising victory over Madison Rayne at Under Siege she was jumped by The Influence. Alisha made the save forming an alliance with Shaw who just had one of her better matches and shined playing as more of a babyface. Now we have a championship match that i’m pretty interested in. Madison and Alisha start off with a lock up and go right for the roll up exchange neither actually gaining the victory. Alisha with a neck breaker to Rayne and covers for two. Shaw tags in and they go for a double suplex but Tenille with the save. Shaw and Alisha take control both dropping Tenille and Madison with thesz presses and some strikes before they head to the outside as we go to commercial. Back from break Shaw and Tenille are in the ring exchanging holds. Shaw with a headlock and tags in Alisha who hits the double axe handle and covers for a two count. Tenille to her feet and kicks Alisha in the midsection, Alisha with the questionable decision of sending Tenille into her own corner. They dont make a tag allowing Alisha to drop Madison off the apron instead. Tenille still inside, Rayne grabs the foot of Alisha and Tenille with the neckbreaker and covers Alisha for a two count. Tenille backs Alisha up to the corner and chokes away at her with her foot. Tenille with an elbow to the back of the head. Madison tags in and stomps at Alisha before choking her in the corner. Rayne distracts the referee allowing Tenille to choke Alisha for a moment. Madison with a cover but again Alisha kicks out at two. Alisha fights back but Rayne drops her with a knee to the midsection. Rayne with another cover again only getting a two count. Rayne taunts Alisha holding her arm telling her to reach for the tag but holding her back to prevent it. Rayne with a headlock on Alisha, Alisha fights out but Rayne sends her face first into her knee and immediately follows with a neck breaker. Rayne covers for two. Rayne tries to drop Shaw off the apron but she doesn’t fall. Instead she’s mad and tries to come back in but the ref stops it. Alisha fights back and drops Madison with an enziguri. Rayne prevents the tag but Alisha kicks her off and Shaw in with the hot tag. Shaw lays into Madison with uppercuts then a kick to the midsection of Tenille, she ducks under a kick from Tenille with a split then kicks her int he face like the damn matrix. Gisele with a DDT to Madison and covers for two, she slaps at the mat and sets Madison up in the corner. Madison sends Shaw faces first into the middle turnbuckle but Alisha is there for the tag. Alisha catches Rayne with a flatliner and covers for a two count but Tenille breaks it up. Shaw is mad and distracts the ref allowing Tenille to hit her from behind. Madison uses Alisha and sends her into the midsection of Shaw like a spear. They drop Alisha with the Collab and Tenille covers for the victory.
Rating: **1/2
Review: This wasn’t a bad match but it wasn’t a great match and kind of just felt off at moments particularly the final stretch. It just felt odd for Shaw to lose after gaining some solid momentum. I get it they want to let this play out a bit as they only have so many female teams to challenge for these championships I just think they could’ve tried something else besides rushing right to a title match if thats the case. 

– VBD are backstage and cut a promo assuring that they will recapture the championships they lost to the Briscoes and they’ll do it quickly.

– Gail Kim is here and she tells us that Impact will be celebrating 20 years at Slammiversary, she announces the first ever Queen of the Mountain match for Slammiversary. Odd cut there. Gail announces the five competitors for the match Tasha Steelz, Chelsea Green, Jordynne Grace, Deonna Purrazzo  and before she can announce the final participant Tasha Steelz comes out. Tasha says WOW a few times before telling Gail she’d do anything to take the title off of her. She asks if it’s because she beat the last of her generation not once but twice. She says Gail was going to announce the fifth person before she so rudely interrupted. Tasha says Gail doesn’t have to announce the final competitor because Tasha will do it. Tasha announces Savanah Evans as the final entrant. Gail denies Savanah an opportunity because all of the competitors are former Knockouts World champions. Gail announces Mia Yim as the final competitor for the Queen of the Mountain match. Tasha says once again she brought someone off the street to cut the line and get an opportunity and she thinks she’s taking things personal. If Gail wants to get personal they can get personal Tasha says before getting in Gail’s face. Mia interrupts to make the save and a brawl breaks out. Mia takes out Tasha and Savanah. She celebrates momentarily before Deonna comes out to attack her. We get a three on one beatdown until Jordynne and Taya come out to even the odds. Jordynne with the final shot dropping Tasha with a spine buster. The faces stand tall as the crowd applauds. This was actually really good despite there being so much going on, all of these women bring a different element that is really interesting. It’s cool to see them continue pushing the legacy of the knockouts. One minor complaint, I know I like them doing qualifiers for the Ultimate X, but i’d rather they had qualifiers for this. 

– Rich Swann is backstage with Gia and he says the opportunity to win the Gauntlet for the Gold doesn’t come every week. He’s a champion who lost and never got a rematch so he knows how hard it is to become champion. Swann talks trash to Cardona for calling his title the Digital Media World Championship, because it’s not a world title but he’d love to have it. Swann says when it comes to tonight he’s ready to fight. All. Night Long.

Jay White & El Phantasmo vs. Josh Alexander & Ishii

Interesting matchup for the Bullet Club, intriguing that Jay is not part of the Gauntlet for the Gold. Would’ve loved to see him win it all honestly. Ishii and Josh put on a banger at Under Siege now they’re teaming up to take on an established duo, should be a good fight. Jay teases starting this before tagging in El P instead. Phantasmo locks up but he’s sent right to the corner. Phantasmo tries to grapple with Josh and that goes as expected as he quickly counters and takes Phantasmo to the mat with a wrist lock. El P escapes and makes the tag, Jay calls for Ishii so Josh makes the tag. Jay and Ishii exchange strikes, White drops him with strikes to the back then a forearm to the face but Ishii fires up and sends White to the corner. Jay with another forearm and Ishii drops Jay to a knee with a shot of his own. Ishii with a forearm sending Jay to the canvas. Ishii drops Phantasmo with a lariat and goes for the brainbuster on Jay but he counters, Ishii goes again but Jay counters with a DDT right onto the top of the skull of Ishii. El P is attacking Josh on the outside after taking him off the apron while the ref is distracted with Jay. El P tags in and heads to the top. Jay holds Ishii in position and El P to the top, he comes down HUGE back rake. El P with another and he covers Ishii for two. Jay tags in, and he lays into Ishii with a back rake. Jay chokes Ishii in the ropes and another back rake. Phantasmo tags in, wristlock then spring boards around just to hit another back rake, I love it. Flashy but not at the same time. Jay tags in Ishii focuses on El P, Jay with a back rake, Ishii lays into Jay and El P, they duck under Ishii and both men with the back rake. This is really happening and it’s kind of great. Jay backs Ishii into the corner and hits some toooo sweet chops in the corner. Jay goes for one more and Ishii no sells it. He ducks another chop, ishii counters another, both men to the mat after chops and Josh and El P tag in. Josh on fire lays into El P with a forearm in the corner. El P runs into another forearm. Josh with the germans on El P but he counters on the third, he goes for one of his own Josh counters into an ankle lock. El P counters out, Josh with a C4 spike on Jay El P with the diving cross body he covers for two. Ishii tags in and hits El P with a clothesline in the corner. Ishii ducks a clothesline, El P goes for a suplex but Ishii counters and hits a german suplex. Ishii goes for the basement lariat, Jay catches him and trips him up, El P heads off the ropes but he’s tripped up by Josh. josh sends Jay to the outside. Josh and Ishii lay into El P. Josh lifts El P up and Ishii hits the basement lariat. Josh prevents Jay from breaking the hold, Ishii with the brainbuster and he covers for the victory in 10:28.
Rating: ***3/4
Review: This had a lot going on and was a lot of fun but it was hard for me to keep up with just because of the action. It makes sense for Ishii and Josh to win even if it comes at the expense of my guys. 

– The Briscoes respond to VBD and they say they aren’t afraid of Joe Doring, they’ll knock the cowboy hat off his dang head and cut him down like a big ass tree. They say the titles aren’t going anywhere as Mark barks at the camera. This is fantastic.

The Gauntlet for the Gold
20 Impact Wrestlers compete for a #1 Contenders Shot at Slammiversary.

(Chris Sabin, Alex Shelly, ….)

So this is royal rumble style rules which makes sense a 20 man Gauntlet would be wild. We got the Motor City Machine Guns kicking this one off. I’ll do my best to keep up as I’m sure it’ll be all over the place. I actually like the idea of doing this on a TV show rather than a PPV. Grappling early between two men who are clearly familiar with each other. Two perfect guys for a match like this. Pretty slow start as Sabin and Shelley just exchange holds neither really angling for an elimination. Sabin with an armdrag as we await the third entrant. Representing Honor No More we get Eddie Edwards. Another person who makes plenty of sense to go a while in this one. The Guns now have someone else to focus on and they do but Eddie takes control laying both men out with a poke to the eyes and a headbutt. Eddie with another headbutt before the Guns regain control with a tag team attack on Eddie. Eddie again fights off both men, Rehwoldt says he’s going to need backup and immediately we get a countdown I can’t imagine it’ll be an Honor No More Member. Vincent comes out. Shocker. Vincent and Shelley exchange strikes as Eddie works over Sabin in the corner. Shelley runs into a knee from Vincent. Vincent with a leg sweep on Shelly and follows with an elbow. Eddie screams that’s what he’s talking about right before Shelley counters sending him into Vincent allowing Sabin to assist him with the tag team maneuver. Shelley and Sabin with combination strikes to Vincent inspiring a response from the crowd. The countdown begins again, and Steve Maclin is out next. Maclin would be an interesting prospect to go the distance here and pick up the win. Maclin gets in the face of Eddie and Vincent, Vince whispers into his ear and Maclin lifts Shelley up setting him up in a tree of woe in front of Sabin. Maclin with the double spear on both men in the corner. That’s sick. Vincent to the top and hits the swanton on Shelley. Vincent and Eddie go to eliminate Shelley while Maclin tries to dump Sabin but it’s unsuccessful as we get the next entrant. OH SHELL YEAH. It’s Shark Boy! Shark Boy hits the ring and runs wild on everybody with a stunner for Maclin. Eddie and Vincent catch Shark Boy from behind, he counters a corner attack allowing the MCMG to hit their wonderful combination moves on Eddie Edwards. Sabin and Shelley send Eddie and Vincent into a double stunner from Shark Boy. Shark Boy and the MCMG hug it out as we go to break. Back from break and somehow noone has been eliminated. Rahj Singh is in the ring after making his entrance during the break. Of course Gujar is out now and he catches Rahj. Gujar with a slingblade to Maclin and a clothesline to Eddie. I stand corrected as Shark Boy got eliminated and Trey Miguel also made his entrance with a really sweet spot but of course it was during the break. Gujar has Singh on the apron looking to eliminate him but Singh counters, Singh looks to jump into the ring but he’s hit with a superkick and eliminated. They say Rahj could’ve used back up so of course Shera comes out. Shera and Gujar exchange strikes. Shera backs Gujar into the corner and eats from forearms and rights for his effort. Shera has Gujar in the corner and hits him with a shoulder to the mid section. Macklin and Sabin in one corner while Shera continues attacking Gujar. Maclin hangs Trey up looking for the elimination but Trey hangs on. BIG MAN W. Morrisey is HERE. Morrisey drops Vincent and Eddie, he catches Maclin with a chokeslam, SHEESH. Black hole slam to Vincent. Shera chokes Morrisey but Morrisey sends him into the rope and eliminates him. Morrisey then eliminates Vincent. Trey nearly dumped by Sabin as the next entrant is out and it’s Eric Young. I never care much for Eric, but I will admit in terms of Impact legends who have been here for a long time it could be worse. Eric goes right for Morrisey and hits him with a piledriver after hitting him with his mask. Gujar ducks a mask shot as referees check on Morrisey, hopefully he’s not really hurt. Eric looks to dump Gujar but he manages to hang on and tries to eliminate Eric, Eric counters and there goes Gujar. I must say if they really wanted to get Gujar over he needed a longer run probably even final four. Morrisey continues to be checked on in the corner. That piledriver did look a bit stiffski. The next entrant is Swinger Daddy. Zicky Dice has a makeshift entrance cart and it’s freaking brilliant. Swinger in and Swinger dumped out. Right back into the cart as Zicky pushes him out. Heath made his entrance during the break as did Black Taurus. Rhino is out as we return and he gores Eddie Edwards right away. Wow Alex Shelley eliminated during the break, a big reason why a royal rumble style match on tv may not work. Trey also eliminated during the break. Not to be too picky but boy it makes no sense to see certain people eliminated by not them just poor pacing. MOOSE IS HERE! Black Taurus tries to eliminate him but instead Moose eliminates him, then Rhino. I notice Morrisey is just gone with no explanation or I missed it, always possible. Heath trying to eliminate Moose but he counters and eliminates Heath instead. I see Morrisey on the outside with refs now, so it’s safe to say it’s probably not that bad. Swann enters and he breaks free of a Moose chokeslam and nails him with a kick, Swann with another kick then to the middle rope and a dropkick takes down Moose. Swann with a super kick then a handspring cutter on Moose. He doesn’t bother trying to eliminate Moose instead turning his attention to Eric Young. Out comes Matt Cardona, nope we got bamboozled it’s Rehwoldt in place of Cardona and he eliminates Rich Swann. Rehwoldt now leaves Hanifan to do all the work alone, what a heel. Rehwoldt now looks to dump Sabin but he hangs on. That took all the air out of the crowd as they were excited to see Cardona and Rehwoldt is a massively underwhelming replacement, I get the heat but it makes little sense why not Brian Meyers? PCO is here and he runs wild on the participants that are still in the ring. We have PCO, Rehwoldt, Maclin, Eric, and Sabin with Morrisey outside and Moose also rolling under to the outside. Rehwoldt challenges PCO and gets tossed to the outside. Suddenly Morrisey is fine and back in the ring, he and PCO exchange strikes then both look for chokeslams, this allows Maclin to eliminate BOTH Morrisey and PCO. Maclin/Morrisey is a great next step for both guys who could easily be championship contenders. Moose back in the ring and he works over Eric but the lights go out and Sami Callihan is here with a bat in hand. Callihan hits Moose in the back dumping him to the outside. Sami does the thumbs up and down before exiting the ring. We are down to the final three with Eric Young, Maclin and Chris Sabin. Maclin and Eric align to attack Sabin, he ducks a double clothesline and drops both men. Sabin with a kick to Maclin while he drops Eric with a tornado DDT. Maclin dropped to the apron he struggles with Sabin and finally he is eliminated by Sabin. Now the final two with the winner decided by pinfall. OHHH I get it. Sorry to whatever Impact historian is in the comments and knew that from the get go. Eric with a cover on Sabin and nearly picks up the win. Eric lifts Sabin up and lays into him with forearms. Sabin fights back with a tornado DDT and covers Eric for a two count. Sabin goes for the cradleshock Eric counters, Sabin with a rollup, again for the cradleshock, Eric rakes the eyes and hits the piledriver on Sabin he covers and picks up the victory.
Rating: ***
Review: Welp. I said it could be worse than Eric in terms of early Impact representatives but this is not what I had in mind. That said I get it and can’t get too upset even though i’m not a fan of Eric there are many reasons that this makes sense. He will be a decent person for Josh to defeat and i’m sure over the next few weeks they’ll give me reason to believe he could win. He honestly could beat Josh I just feel like it won’t happen primarily because I don’t want it to. Even though the wrong guy won this was a fun main event. 

The final score: review Good
The 411
This was a pretty solid follow up to Under Siege and was primarily highlighted by an extended gauntlet for the gold to close out the show. That allowed for less matches throughout and instead just a number of long decent to very good matches. This week was a bit of a step back for me but i'm sure others will enjoy it a lot. I'm just not a big EY fan so it takes it down just a notch for me but regardless of personal preference it's undeniable Impact continues it's streak of good shows.

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Impact Wrestling, Andrew Cazer