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Leighty’s Impact Slammiversary 2020 Review

July 18, 2020 | Posted by Robert Leighty Jr.
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Leighty’s Impact Slammiversary 2020 Review  

Impact Slammiversary 2020
-July 18, 2020
-Skyway Studios, Nashville, TN

-Announce Team: Josh Mathews and Don Callis

-This should be an interesting night as I am filling in for this show at the last minute. I was asked to be on standby even as I let the powers to be know that my exposure to Impact has been limited for years, but it’s wrestling, and I like wrestling, so here we are. I know there is a lot of interest in this show because of who may show up. We know The Good Brothers have signed, but who else will we see? Let’s get to it!

Open Challenge: The Rascalz vs. The Motor City Machineguns

-The mystery team turns out to be The Motor City Machineguns. MCMG I know as I was watching TNA when they were killing it in the Tag Division. Don is having audio issues, so it’s only Matthews so far on commentary and as I type that his issue is fixed. We start with a mat sequence with Wentz and Shelley and it’s a stalemate so they each tag out. Now Sabin has a go with Dez and it’s more of the same as they do chain wrestling with some flips involved. Sabin gets a clothesline to take control, but Dez comes back with a rana to send Sabin to the floor. He looks for a dive, but Shelly cuts him off. Shelly pays for it as he gets double teamed in the corner. Sabin comes in and gets the same as The Rascalz are just flying all over the place. Wentz hooks in a front facelock, but Sabin punches out to escape. He can’t follow up though and Dez tags in to hit a Senton. Another tag to Wentz and he hits his own Senton. Wentz and Dez take turns tagging and hitting Sentons in a fun spot. Shelley eats a shot on the apron, but that just fires up the Guns. They isolate Dez and double team him before hitting a punt on the floor. Shelley and Wentz meet back in the ring and throw blows, which Shelley wins. A tag is made to Sabin and Wentz eats some more double team offense. Sabin goes to work on the back with a bow and arrow and then into an arm-bar. Matthews has made sure to mention The Good Brothers announced they are back with Impact Wrestling. MCMG use more tandem offense as Wentz takes an atomic drop and then a boot to the spine. Sabin back in and he hits a nice suplex for two. He then goes to an arm-bar while also manipulating the fingers. Shelley back in as he comes off the top with a double axe. Wentz fights back, but can’t take on both men. MCMG each land a punch and Wentz seems out on his feet. Wentz gets a desperation shot to Shelley’s face and the hot tag is made to Dez. Sabin is also in, but Dez runs wild with a combination of moves. He uses Sabin as a springboard to splash Shelley. He charges again but eats an elbow from Sabin. Shelley makes the tag and looks for a German, but gets rammed into the wrong corner. All 4 men in and Shelley eats a corner dropkick. Wentz then gets a superkick and a double team move off the top gets a two count as Sabin makes the save. Wentz takes Sabin out with a Codebreaker. Shelley counters a Swanton, but Dez is legal and cuts off the tag to Sabin. Shelley connects with a German Suplex to leave both men out. Sabin gets the tag and hits a missile dropkick to the back of the neck. MCMG double Dez and get a near fall as everyone is still in the ring as this is getting hard to cover. All four men are down, but MCMG is up first and kill Dez with kicks. They hit The Dirt Bomb to win this one at 14:46.

Winners: The Motor City Machineguns via pin at 14:46
-Nice to see MCMG and I was entertained by this one even if I couldn’t keep up with it all the time. This was a fun match with tons of moves and dives which isn’t normally my style, but again it was fun. ***

-Announce team runs down the card and throw to a backstage segment that takes a few minutes to play. Not sure what I saw but it apparently relates to the KO Gauntlet for The Gold Match as I recognized Rosemary.

-Video package for Moose vs Tommy Dreamer. Wild, as it’s 2020 and I am watching Tommy Dreamer wrestle for a World Title on PPV that I was asked to cover at the last minute. Good promo from Dreamer, which is to be expected. I do know the issue with the World Title and Blanchard having is stripped and Moose claiming it for himself.

(Unsanctioned) TNA World Title Match: Moose (c) vs. Tommy Dreamer

-Old School Rules means anything goes which makes sense for a Dreamer match as he needs the smoke and mirrors. Moose mauls Dreamer to start as you would expect and sends him to the floor as he tells us he is the best wrester in the world. Dreamer gets a garbage can full of weapons from under the ring and that is the only thing that can keep him in this one. He uses whatever he can, but ends up getting crotched on the railing as he has been doing in every match for the last 20 plus years. Has anyone taken more ball shots in their career than Tommy Dreamer? Moose takes Dreamer over the ramp and hits a suplex. His trash talk is on point as he calls Dreamer an old man and son of a bitch. He also tells us he is a Wrestling God. Now Moose finds a kendo stick, which is another Dreamer staple. He lays in with a couple leg shots, but Dreamer ducks one to the head and gets a White Russian Leg Sweep. Now Dreamer gets in a few shots with the kendo stick and tries to come off the top with it, but Moose catches him coming down with a dropkick. Nice! That looked like it sucked for Dreamer! Moose gets the garbage can and puts it over Dreamer’s head in the corner and hits a running dropkick. Moose tells us that this is so easy. He springs to the tope and comes off, but gets caught with a cutter on the can. That nets Dreamer a two count. Dreamer rolls to the floor and grabs a chair. He sets it up, but ends up getting caught with a drop toehold into the chair. Now Moose to the floor where he finds even more chairs. So many chairs under the ring which is weird considering there are no fans at these shows. The chairs are piled in the ring and Moose looks for a powerbomb, but Dreamer is too bottom heavy apparently. Dreamer fires off some shots, but Moose is too strong and slams Dreamer on the chairs. He follows with an impressive standing moonsault for two. Moose misses a middle rope moonsault and Dreamer follows with a DDT for two. Dreamer rolls to the floor and finds a black bag as Callis thinks it could be salt. Matthews guesses tacks and indeed that’s what we have. Dreamer looks for a pilderiver, but gets a hammer fist to the balls. See what I mean with Dreamer’s balls. Moose teases putting Dreamer’s eye in the tacks which has to be a slight shot at Extreme Rules tomorrow. Dreamer fights it off, but only delays the inevitable as he gets slammed face first into the tacks. The Lights Out Spear finishes at 11:20.

Winner and Still TNA World CHampion: Moose via pin at 11:20
-About what you would expect from a Tommy Dreamer match. It was a plunder filled brawl that went a bit too long. **

-To the back as someone important is arriving in a Jaguar and it’s Swinger. It seems the car is a rental for Anderson and when he saw Ole wasn’t there he took it.

Gauntlet Match for Knockout’s #1 Contender Spot

-#1 is Tasha Steelz and #2 is Kylie Rae. This is basically a Royal Rumble with 2 minute intervals, but when we get down to two it becomes a standard match. Steelz gets a shoulder tackle, but Rae is back with a rana. They have a stalemate sequence and slow things down a bit. The next entrant at 3 is Taya Valkyrie, but it’s really Bravo dressed as her. Okay then! He gets sent over the top rope and immediately Kimber Lee is next at 4. No way that was even close to 2 minutes. Lee runs wild as I have a feeling that is going to be typed a lot in this match. Steelz catches her with a dropkick and then Kiera Hogan is out at 5. I mean these intervals are like 40 seconds at this point. Kiera and Tasha are apparently partners so that should help them. Nothing really happens as we are ready for Susie at 6. She throws palm strikes that miss a few people. Steelz counters a rana on the top, but eats a superkick to send her to the floor and out. 7 is Katie Forbes as she is apparently from Twerk City. She gets to run wild as everyone feeds her. Kiera tries to compliment her outfit and we get both of them twerking. 8 is Madison Rayne and I know of her and know she is married to Mathews. She gets to run wild a bit as there is not much going on at all in this one. Everyone is basically social distancing as they lay on the mat while 2 women fight. Next at 9 is Havok who is a former champ that was never pinned when she lost her title. She destroys everyone including a chokeslam on Rae and the countdown is on as at 10 is Taya Valkyrie for real. Okay then! She runs wild a bit and even gets to fire off some shots on Havok as my stream freezes and then goes black. It’s back in time to see Alisha enter at 11. She gets a double clothesline on Susie and Rae. Callis tells us Forbes was eliminated at some point. Nevaeh is next at 12 as she is a long time partner of Havok. She gets to run wild a bit as Havok helps her control the ring. Rosemary is 13 (which makes sense) as we have way too many bodies in the ring. She hits Susie with a spear and everyone pairs off for some generic brawling. Susie ends up on the apron and gets eliminated as Bravo is back out again as Rosemary this time. Again, what am I watching? Bravo eliminates Havok, but then gets eliminated by Rae. Rayne is tossed out next by Rae. I think this it as for as participants as it has been longer than 40 seconds since the last entrant. Alisha gets eliminated and then Navaeh gets tossed as well. Hogan is the next to go as we are down to 4 left in this one. Lee gets a clothesline to the floor as we are down to Rae, Rosemary, and Valkyrie. Rosemary gets tossed by Valkyrie “accidentally” and that leaves us with Rae vs Valkyrie in a standard match now as the ref enters the ring. Rae gets a superkick out of nowhere to win this at 19:40.

Winner: Kyle Rae via pin at 19:40
-This was a mess without any flow and stupid comedy involved. It fell in the pattern of everyone standing or laying around for the next entrant. I was not a fan of this. 1/2*

-The former Heath Slater is out as he has come to Impact to make an Impact. Apparently he is just going by Heath now. He is ready to accept the Rascalz open challenge and is interrupted by someone I don’t know. Sorry! He laughs at Heath for his last match ending so quickly. Heath sends him packing. Note: I checked the roster and it was Rohit Raju.

-Video package for Willie Mack vs Chris Bey.

X Division Title: Willie Mack (c) vs. Chris Bey

-They throw hands to start and that goes badly for Bey. He smartly uses his quickness to stay away, but gets too cute and gets caught with a Thesz Press. Mack looks for a dive, but Bey walks away to stop that noise. Mack tries a kick, but Bey grabs the leg. Bey gets caught on the apron and eats a cutter in a nasty bump to the apron and floor. They head back in the ring where Mack gets a fall away slam with ease. Mathews mentions AJ Styles was the first X Division Champion. Mack gets a standing moonsault for two. To the corner where Mack throws some elbows, but then misses a charge and eats a kick to the face. Mack is back with his own kick and we fight on top. Bey tries the sunset flip powerbomb, but can’t. He does get a slingshot slingblade for two. Bey gets a running forearm in the corner and follows with a swinging neckbreaker for two. Biting trash talk as he calls him, “Willie Whack.” That pisses Mack off as he fires off some nasty chops. Bey tries to come off the top, but gets caught with a bomb on the way down. That leaves both men down as the ref starts his 10 count. Mack takes his head off with a clothesline and then a running one in the corner. Another one as Bey should be mush as this point. Mack gets a running backsplash in the corner. An exploder is countered into a pin for two. Willie catches him a second time with an Exploder into the corner for two. Mack took too long for that cover and it cost him. Mack heads up top, but Bey uses the ref as a shield and then sends him into the ropes to knock Mack off balance. Bey gets a dropkick to Mack as he was in the Tree of Woe. Bey gets a sunset flip bomb for two as both men are down again. Mack pops off a Stunner and heads up for the Six Star Frog Splash, but Bey moves. The ref gets caught, so Bey goes to the eyes and then hits The Art of Finesse for the pin and title at 10:00.

Winner and New X Division Champion: Chris Bey at 10:00
-Another match that was just a bunch of moves, flips, and dives. Mack hits hard and it was a decent story of big vs little. The result surprised me a bit as I assumed Mack was winning here, but that’s only because I knew of him. **3/4

-Heath backstage and he meets up with Rhino is a nice moment. First SmackDown Tag Champions! Heath is told he is a free agent and can’t be here because of the pandemic. He is given a few seconds to say goodbye and Rhino tells him to say hi to the kids. Nice!

Impact Tag Titles: The North (c) vs. Ken Shamrock and Sami Callihan

-So we have tag partners that hate each other with Shamrock and Callihan. Original! Shamrock starts with Alexander and Shamrock nearly gets an arm. They have a go on the mat and Shamrock looks for a triangle, but turns into a ankle-lock, but Alexander gets to the bottom rope. Page tries to talk sense into Alexander about getting into a submission battle with Shamrock. Callihan gets the tags and he fires away on Alexander. A kick to the back follows, but Alexander gets in a shot and is able to make a tag. Callihan takes on both members and sends Page into his corner. Shamrock tags in and Page is kind of screwed here. Callihan tags back in and gets a headbutt and then a chinlock. Page gets to the ropes to break, so Sami tags out to Shamrock. He kicks Page in the nose and then into the corner. The North is getting mauled here! Callihan is back in as Mathews lets me know The North has held the title for over a year now. I like when announcers let me know things like that. All four men fight and end up on the floor as this one is breaking down a bit. The North beat on Shamrock as Callihan is out somewhere. Alexander is back in the ring with Shamrock and fires off shoulders in the corner. Mathews puts over that The North defeated LAX and The Lucha Bros. Callihan gets the tag and he takes care of both members of The North again and gets a brainbuster on Page for two. Alexander gets in a cheap shot from the apron and that lets Page get a dropkick. Alexander gets the tag and he throws kicks as Callihan tells him he wants more. To the corner where Page gets the tag and runs over Callihan with a shoulder. Page locks in a chinlock as he screams for the camera to get a closeup and instead they give us a wide shot. Ha! I’m sure that wasn’t intentional, but I chuckled. Sami counters a sleeper with a jawbreaker, but Page is able to prevent the tag. They slug it out in the middle of the ring and then boot each other in the face to leave them both down. The race is on and both men get a tag. Shamrock dominates as he gets a powerslam for two and then makes a tag to Callihan for some reason. Callihan goes up in the wrong corner and pays for it. The North get a modified crucifix bomb for two. Shamrock gets another tag as Sami slips out of a move. He throws Alexander over the top with a suplex and then locks in an ankle-lock on Page. Alexander gets one of his own on Callihan as the ref asks both men which shouldn’t be legal. Callihan fires off a cutter and Shamrock gets another ankle-lock, but Page breaks that up by firing Sami into him. That leads to the miscommunication as Shamrock is pissed. This is becoming a mess as all four men have been in the ring. Callihan and Page brawl on the floor. Shamrock goes for a kick and hits Callihan by mistake. Shamrock and Alexander fight up top and Shamrock gets a super belly to belly. Shamrock tries a plancha and trips over the top. The North toss him back inside as this is falling apart. The North hit a double flapjack to retain at 16:06.

Winners: The North via pin at 16:06
-Again this seemed way too long and got very sloppy at the end. If this was shortened a bit they may have had something. *1/2

-The North claim to be the best tag champions in TNA/Impact History. The MCMG are out to disagree with them. It seems MCMG vs The North this Tuesday for the Tag Titles. That could be fun!

-To the back where Rich Swann tells us he has his eyes on the Impact World Title.

-Video Package for Grace vs Purrazzo.

Impact Knockouts Championship: Jordynne Grace (c) vs. Deonna Purrazzo

-Purrazzo gets flustered early so she bails to create space. This continues a bit as this one is starting off slow. Purrazzo to the floor again as she tells the ref she is in charge. The feeling out process continues, but picks up as Grace catches her with a clothesline and then a throw. Purrazzo to the floor again, but this time Grace hits a dive as she is tired of waiting. They head back in the ring where Grace gets a one count. Purrazzo gets a stomp to the shoulder as he escapes a superplex attempt. The announcers have done a great job of putting over Purrazzo’s armbar submission which sets up why she is working the shoulder/arm. She targets the arm and wraps it around the bottom rope. Purrazzo gets a clothesline for a one count and goes back to the arm. Grace gets to the ropes, so Purrazzo kicks the arm. Nice! They do a reversal sequence and Purrazzo gets the armbar for a brief second, but Grace is out. Another go and this time Purrazzo gets the arm breaker, but Grace is able to wiggle her way to the ropes to break again. Deonna continues to work the arm and gets a takedown by using the arm. Deonna gets caught with a strike to the back of the neck. Grace gets a head of steam and uses her power advantage. She hits a backsplash for a two count. She tries for a belly to back but can’t get it. Deonna gets a roll-up for two, but Grace rolls her through and gets a choke on the mat. Deonna rolls over to get a pin attempt and Grace has to let go to keep from getting pinned. Grace wraps Deonna around the post to continue the work on the back. Deonna catches Grace coming back through the ropes though. They exchange blows and Grace gets another two count off a driver. Deonna catches Grace coming in with an armbar, but Grace turns it into a pin and Deonna has to release the hold. Both women are out as the ref starts the 10 count. The fight from their knees as the throw bombs at each other. Grace hits a few slams, but Deonna keeps coming. She hits Grace with a German, but Grace pops up and hits one of her own. Deonna comes back with a pump kick and goes to the arm. She hits The Pendulum (snap suplex) for two. They fight over a suplex attempt and then Deonna gets caught with a boot charging in. Grace connects with a Vader Bomb for two. Grace looks for the Grace Driver and throws elbows to weaken Deonna for the move. Deonna keeps avoiding and nearly gets the win with a jacknife cover. Deonna gets both arms and bends them in ways they shouldn’t and Grace verbally gives it up at 15:11.

Winner and New Knockouts Champion: Deonna Purrazzo via pin at 15:11
-These ladies worked a hard fought match with a pretty decent story. It was power vs submission and I enjoyed Purrazzo working the arm the entire match. This was pretty good and different from everything else on the card so far. ***

-Video package for our Main Event as a new Impact World Champion will be crowned. Now it’s all making sense as this is the title Blanchard was stripped off and Moose just claimed the TNA Title for himself. Again, I admitted that I’m not up on my Impact game. They also discuss who will be the mystery opponent as a former World Champion has been teased.

Impact World Title: Ace Austin (w/ Madman Fulton) vs. Eddie Edwards vs. Trey vs. Rich Swann

-Well, that’s kind of a letdown after the tease of all the former guys it could have been. Before the bell starts though piano music plays and Eric Young is here. Well, that’s a little better. Young says he is in this match as it’s now a 5 Way.

Impact World Title Elimination Match: Ace Austin (w/ Madman Fulton) vs. Eddie Edwards vs. Trey vs. Rich Swann vs. Eric Young

-This is going to be a challenge to cover. Swann and Young have a go inside the ring. Edwards in and he fires off some chops. Young gets a belly to belly suplex and then has a go again with Swann. Austin gets sent to the floor, but Trey is in. He and Swann do a bunch of flips and counters and Swann ends up getting a rana. Edwards in and he sends Swann flying with a belly to belly. Eddie tries a dive, but gets caught by Madman who slams him on the apron. The ref has seen enough and sends The Madman to the back or Austin will be disqualified. Trey spears Austin and chases him back into the ring. Swann gets a rana from the top on Austin. Edwards and Young have a a go and that leads to Edwards firing off rapid fire chops. Edwards kicks Swann in the face and then powerbombs him onto Young. Austin catches Edwards with a elbow and tries the Backpack Stunner, but he escapes. Trey and Austin throw blows again as Swann gets a Springboard Stunner. He tries again on Edwards, but eats a Blue Thunder Bomb. Young has been cut open above his eye at some point in this one. Everyone is out as Trey yells for Ace to get up. They throw strikes and then Trey gets a slap to the face. He kicks Austin in the face as apparently everyone else is sleeping. Trey gets a rana as that is like the 100th one on this match. Trey gets a neckbreaker on Austin. Swann is back and he ends up eating a head kick from Trey. Eddie and Trey have a go and it ends with Trey diving to the floor and hitting something that looked like it should have killed Swann as he was spiked on his head, but apparently the impact was on Trey. I don’t understand that one! Austin and Edwards square off back in the ring and Edwards gets a Tiger Driver, but Trey makes the save. Trey stated he wanted to eliminate Austin, but that’s still pretty stupid. Sure enough Young hits a move that sends Trey packing at 9:38. Well, serves him right! Young looks like a crazy man with the blood pouring down his face. He talks trash to Swann, who fires up with right hands. A sweet backfist connects, but he gets dropped on the back of his head with a suplex for a two count. Edwards and Austin are still outside the ring as this Swann/Young match continues They fight up top and Swann counters whatever Young was attempting into a top rope bulldog. He can’t get a pin attempt however as Edwards and Austin finally rejoin the match. Edwards and Ace battle on the apron and to the top rope. Edwards looks for a top rope suplex to the floor. As they fight Swann and Young join them and it ends with Young powerbombing Swann into Edwards and Austin who go flying off the top and through the time keeper’s table. Damn! Now that is an effective way to explain why neither man can be involved in the match for a few minutes. Young tries a piledriver, but Swann rolls through for the pin to eliminate Young at 15:38. Young won’t go quietly though and clips the injured knee. Swann had been out for 8 months with the damaged wheel. Young finds a chair and continues the destruction of Swann’s knee. Young screams that Swann brought this on himself as Swann screams in agony. He pounds the mat and curses in frustration as he sells the leg for all it’s worth. Austin is the first to get back in the ring and he smartly goes for the leg. Swann gets a roll-up for two and then a backslide as he is a one legged man in this match. He fires up and gets to his feet, but Austin gets a kick to the knee and The Fold ends Swann’s night at 18:58. We are down to Ace Austin and Eddie Edwards as they have history together according to Matthews. Edwards takes the tape off his first as he means business. They start throwing blows at each other and then go crazy with fists. Austin gets the better of this exchange and then we get a chop contents. Eddie wins that one as Austin crumbles to the mat. Austin gets in a desperation kick to leave both men down. Austin looks for the Fold, but Edwards catches him with a belly to belly into the corner for two. Austin gets a reversal and sends Edwards into the ropes and hits The Fold for a two count. He heads up top, but gets caught by Edwards and he hits Diehard Flowsion to end this at 24:32.

Winner and New Impact World Champion: Eddie Edwards via pin at 24:32
-This was a formulaic multi-man match with a lot of 2 men fighting while everyone else disappears. It did get good once we got down a few bodies, and the closing stretch was solid. A match like this deserves time so no complaints there, but it wasn’t enough to totally overcome the flaws in the match and take it to great territory. I’d still say match of the night though. ***1/2

-Madman is out to attack, but The Good Brothers are here. They stare off with Ace and Madman while Edwards is in the corner. The Good Brothers tease being on the side of the heels, but kick their ass instead. Anderson hits the Gun Stun and then Austin eats a Magic Killer.

-As Matthews is ready to send us off the air, we get a video and it’s EC3!

-Thanks for reading!

7.0
The final score: review Good
The 411
As mentioned I am not up to date on Impact and just know what I do from the few times I have seen the show in recent years and by the recaps Larry wrote. So this show was probably more enjoyable to those that follow the show. Overall I would say this was a solid show with the opener, KO Title, and Main Event being good matches. Those matches coupled with the X Title match make this show a mild thumbs up but that Gauntlet for the Gold Match just didn't work for me. I was also expecting a lot more surprises and that didn't happen here. Young and EC3 make sense returning here, but that was kind of expected. The only real surprise was Heath and well they still had him playing somewhat of a comedy character. Overall, I'll say I enjoyed the show and I will try to catch some more of Impact in the future.
legend