SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
Kong And KM: More credit to Impact here for keeping Kongo Kong looking strong. With the upcoming trip to India, I was afraid they were going to have Mahabali Shera take him down to set up a match at the tapings, where he would then go over. That could still happen, but Kong looked good in the tag match and should be protected in the coming months in case they want to set him up against Bobby Lashley or Alberto El Patron in a top program.
Rosemary’s Turn: I wouldn’t have minded seeing Rosemary remain a heel for another year, but Impact was in a tough spot with the departure of Crazzy Steve. They had her switch her allegiance on the spectrum of good and evil and so far it looks promising. The crowd was receptive and gave her one of the biggest pops of the night. Here’s to hoping she doesn’t tone down her act now, as she’s been doing a great job over the past few months.
Steiner’s Return: Scott Steiner is 54-years-old, but damn…is he still intimidating. In all of wrestling, only Brock Lesnar can really match his believability when it comes to feeling like a true heel. Braun Strowman? Guy seems like a large teddy bear off-air (as his social media will gladly point out), but Scott doesn’t have time for that nonsense. The match will likely stink, but this played out far better than I was thinking it would when I saw the initial photos of him in the Impact Zone weeks ago. Also, Josh Mathews was surprisingly decent on the mic during his initial apology. Unfortunately, he turned it back up to cartoonish levels, but if he could tone it down a bit he could possibly be an effective manager.
Davey And Angelina: There was some bad here. Due to the incredibly personal nature of this feud, Alisha Edwards shouldn’t try to win with a roll up! Was that supposed to teach Angelina Love a lesson or something? Then Alisha turned her back to open herself up for an attack. That was also a bit foolish. However, the “Bonny and Clyde” of Impact ended this segment on another hot note. Davey forcing his old friend to watch his wife get powerbombed through a table is deplorable. Awesome! And his “Why won’t you just die?” caught me off guard and helped add a bit more fire to this feud. In my mind, it continues to be the best story told in all of WWE or Impact in 2017
Spud’s Explanation: Spud didn’t show up on Impact this week like he said he would, but he had an actual reason why not! Every other TV show would extend that courtesy to their audience, but wrestling continually tries to get away with it. See Rusev and Emmalina for recent examples.
The Main Event: EC III, James Storm, and Magnus continued the streak of entertaining Impact main events. It’s been at least a month now! The two heels ganging up on Storm was fun to watch, and their quick split was also good. There were some believable nearfalls and each guy got to look strong at various points in the match. Hopefully, they have something good in mind for Carter’s win, as Bruce Prichard screwing him over isn’t going to do anyone any favors.
The Opening Segment: While the main event streak is still intact, Impact’s streak of solid show openers has come to an end. This just didn’t make any sense. Why does Bruce Prichard need any sort of investigation into EC III’s attack? PRICHARD WAS ATTACKED BY HIM! He’s also one of the 47 members of management, so just suspend the guy. Plus, they added heel Tyrus to his act for no reason. Impact still can’t seem to make Bruce fit into their narrative. If they want him on the show because of the popularity of his podcast, then they need to find a new role for him to play.
Ham Sandwiches: I almost feel I should give this a hit due to how bad it was. Magnus called EC III and James Storm a couple of “ham sandwiches.” Over 12 hours after watching and a good night of sleep to think on it…I still can’t wrap my head around what he was going for with that one. It’s almost a compliment. A lot of people like ham sandwiches! A diarrhea sandwich sounds a lot more unpleasant. That insult would have given him some real heat!
Veterans Of War: I’m just not feeling this act at all. I respect the hell out of anyone who has served in the armed forces but having that fact be an entire gimmick feels like it comes straight from the 1980s. It reminds me of acts like Corporal Kirchner and Sgt. Slaughter. On commentary, the announcers should play up their military background on occasion, but coming to the ring with the bullet accessory, the giant boots, and camo pants feel like it’s pandering. Plus, if they don’t handle the feud with L.A.X. very carefully (which so far they have not), it could alienate potential fans due to making the minority team look like villains for venting their frustrations about society.
NOW CHECK OUT LAST WEEK’S COLUMN: IMPACT HITS & MISSES: LAX, Ultimate X, ODB, Brandon Baxton, Josh Matthews, James Storm vs. EC3, more