MCMAHON’S GFW IMPACT REPORT
Sept. 14, 2017
Taped from Orlando, Fla. (Universal Studios)
Aired on Pop TV
Announcers: Josh Mathews & Jeremy Borash
Immediately following tonight’s Impact Wrestling, tune in to the PWTorch Livecast. Mike McMahon and Andrew Soucek will discuss tonight’s show with callers. Listen at www.pwtorchlivecast.com and call the show at 515-605-9345 or email email@example.com
— GFW aired a graphic asking fans to donate to the Red Cross.
— Lashley and American Top Team were shown arriving at the building. A GFW official was attacked by an ATT member as the group arrived.
— A video aired on what was happening on the show tonight.
— In-arena: Braxton Sutter was shown arriving.
McMahon: Very interesting that the show did not include the new GFW signature graphic, showing the networks worldwide where the show airs. That’s a GFW graphic. Also, as the show opened, Borash welcomed the audience to Impact Wrestling, with again no mention of GFW. Obviously there will be some elements of the show where GFW will need to be included, as these shows were pre-taped, but with reports out there that Jeff Jarrett still owns the GFW trademark, it’s interesting to see the company not use that open tonight.
That said, a few minutes into the opening match, Borash did say “we are Global Force,” so perhaps I’m reading too much into it.
(1) BRAXTON SUTTER vs. GARZA JR.
Some really good chain wrestling to begin the match. Sutter hit a cutter on Garza Jr. off the top rope. Garza Jr. blew a kiss to Allie before the pants spot, ripping them off and throwing them at Allie. Sutter charged Garza Jr. but he rolled out and they wrestled on the outside. Garza Jr. hit Sutter with a superkick and then dropped him on the steps. Sutter hit a gut-wrench powerbomb for a two count and then tried for two more pin attempts. Garza Jr. hit a moonsault off the second rope for the win.
WINNER: Garza Jr. in 5:00.
After the match, Garza Jr. celebrated on the turnbuckle. Borash and Mathews praised Garza Jr. Garza pulled the rope to allow Allie into the ring on his way out to the ramp. Allie checked on Sutter, who got up and blamed Allie for the loss. Sutter went to leave but then came back and looked to be calmer and gave Allie a quick hug. He grabbed her hand and tried to leave but Allie wouldn’t budge. Sutter spoke to her again for a few seconds and then she seemed to reluctantly leave with him.
McMahon: The finish felt like it came out of nowhere, but this match had some good action and chain wrestling. The Allie-Sutter story I just can’t get into. We’ve seen the “jealous boyfriend” thing over and over again, and I’m just not enjoying the angle. Unless they find a clever way to spin it — and I don’t have much confidence — I’m expecting a few more weeks of tease before Allie finally breaks away.
(2) ECIII vs. ELI HIJO DEL FANTASMA — Impact Grand Championship match
Judges for this match are Dutch Mantel, Scott D’Amore and Hector Guerrero.
Round 1: ECIII refused a handshake from Fantasma to begin the match. ECIII yelled something at Fantasma, which was bleeped out. ECIII hit a shoulder tackle but Fantasma came back with a few hip tosses. With 40 seconds left in the round, ECIII got a two count. The round ended with ECIII in control after a TK3 to the outside. In my opinion, ECIII should win that round on all three judge scorecards, but we know how these matches tend to work. (Scores — ECIII, 30-27)
Round 2: Well good, the judges all agreed the wrestled who dominated a round won the round. The bell rings for this round and Fantasma charges him right away with kicks in the corner but ECIII came back with a huge forearm for a two count. ECIII hit a suplex for a two count. About halfway through the round Fantasma came back with double knees to ECIII’s chest in the corner. Fantasma hit a hurricanrana off the top and then a splash off the top for a two count. Fantasma gets out of a One Percenter and then applied a submission but time ran out in the round. (Scores — Fantasma, 30-27)
Round 3: ECIII went for a roll-up to start the round, but then lifted Fantasma into a sit-down powerbomb for a two count. One minute into the round, Fantasma and ECIII traded punches mid-ring. When they both fell to the mat, Fantasma tried for a submission but ECIII rolled out. Borash plugged Swedish Dicks, which is some Pop show. In the last 30 seconds, ECIII hit Fantasma with a running knee and then a One Percenter off the second rope, but ECIII couldn’t get to Fantasma in time for the pin. (Scores: ECIII, 29-28)
In a split decision, ECIII retain the title. Scott D’Amore and Hector Guerrero had the match for ECIII with Dutch Mantel having the match for Fantasma. Fantasma went to the outside and yelled at Guerrero. After some yelling, Guerrero took a shove from Fantasma and then got up and shoved him back. The two men yelled in Spanish for a few seconds before Fantasma came back to the ring and argued with ECIII. Pagano then hit the ring and attacked ECIII. Pagano and Fantasma double-teamed ECIII. Eddie Edwards ran down to make the save for ECIII. After Pagano and Fantasma retreated, ECIII and Edwards spoke in the ring for a few moments.
WINNER: ECIII in 19:00.
McMahon: Maybe it’s just me, but I feel like we haven’t seen ECIII in forever. ECIII and the Grand Championship have felt like a total afterthought with the Lashley storyline and so much happening with the World Title. ECIII dominated the first round but I thought the 30-27 round in the second round for Fantasma was a little off. He was on defense for the first 90 seconds before hitting some big moves late in the round.
Also, I never really considered that they were going to go in this direction, but for the first time with this segment, it feels like they’re building to a GFW vs. AAA feud.
— LAX was shown arriving in Mexico for their match in Crash against oVe. Konnan and LAX show up and see Homicide. LAX was shown inside a Mexican strip club. Konnan said that oVe has the deck stacked against them. Konnan said they have the ref paid off.
McMahon: LAX is the coolest thing GFW has going right now. These video packages are very non-PG, and it’s a niche GFW can slide into. They don’t need to get over-the-top raunchy like the Attitude Era, but they can be a tad more adult-themed while also trying to promote wrestling matches. I’ve praised GFW’s production with these packages for a while, and I was a fan of this one.
(3) LAX vs. oVe vs. ??? vs ??? — GFW Tag Team Championship match
Match is from The Crash promotion in Tijuana, Mexico
This is a four-way match with two other teams. Instead of the full match, GFW produced a highlight package with a music video, similar to the Hardy matches that were produced this way earlier in the year. As part of the package, oVe kicked out of LAX’s finisher. oVe was about to win the match but Homicide pulled out the referee. LAX then hit their finisher on one of the other Crash teams to win the match.
WINNER: LAX retains
— Video was shown from after the match. oVe walked into the room where LAX was. It looked like a training room with a ring. Konnan said that oVe signed their death warrants. With LAX and other Crash wrestlers crowding around them, Konnan told them to leave. They did, but as oVe left, the brothers said that they knew where LAX’s clubhouse was, and they were going to go have some fun.
McMahon: I wish they showed the entire matches. Maybe there is some contractual or production reason they can’t, but I felt this way with the Expedition of Gold matches as well. It would be better to see these matches in their entirety rather than a music video.
(4) GRADO vs. WILLIAM WEEKS
After a handshake, Grado was quickly in control. Grado hit the big boot for the win. Borash said this was Grado’s farewell match because he’s being deported.
WINNER: Grado in 1:00
After the match, Grado took a mic. He said he leaves tomorrow at 10 a.m. Joseph Park came to the ring and told Grado to wait. Park said that as of today, Park, Park & Park can represent athletes after starting a sports management division, and Park has sponsored Grado on a work visa. Park said he was going to get Grado appearances and bookings. Park said he would get Grado on all 6,000 podcasts the boys rave about. Park said they would make a ton of money and they hugged.
McMahon: This has to lead to Park turning on Grado, right? He kind of owns him now.
— McKenzie Mitchell interviewed Johnny Impact, and as you might expect, it was a little awkward. “Slam Town” sounds awful and very not cool.
— Lashley walked in to Jim Cornette’s office with American Top Team and asked Cornette for his release so he could go to MMA. Cornette screamed that Lashley was not bigger than GFW. Cornette said he can’t handle ATT. Cornette told Dan Lambert to get off the property. Cornette said if Lashley wants his release, he has to go to the ring, 1-on-1, with Moose and settle whatever issue they have. Cornette said that if Lashley does that, he’ll give Lashley his release. Lambert said they would gladly leave if Lashley got his release. Cornette said Lashley was making a mistake.
(5) SONJAY DUTT vs. TREVOR LEE — Falls Count Anywhere match for the X Division Championship
Lee kicked Sonjay as he came into the ring and the bell rang. Sonjay and Lee brawled on the outside and threw Sonjay into the ring post. Sonjay threw Lee face first into the ring post for a two count on the outside. Lee whipped Sonjay into the corner. Sonjay went to the outside and brought a chair into the ring, but Lee tossed it to the outside. Both men collide with a double kick and they’re both out. Sonjay kicked out of a pin attempt after both men were down. Sonjay hit a spinning DDT. Sonjay went to the top rope but Lee cut him off. Lee hit a superplex off the top rope. On the outside, Lee set Sonjay up next to the ring steps. Lee threw the chair at him but Sonjay moved and came back with punches on the ramp. Sonjay threw Lee through the barricade and into the crowd. In the crowd, Sonjay hit a standing moonsault for a two count.
Back from the break, they were brawling backstage and outside on the lot. Trevor Lee rolled up Sonjay for the win after getting help from Caleb Konley.
WINNER: Trevor Lee in 15:00 to win the X Division Title.
McMahon: I’m fine with the title change. In fact, I think it was necessary. I do hope they move Lee away from Sonjay and into something with Dezmond Xavier (remember him?) or someone else.
— Backstage: Richard Justice was beat up by American Top Team.
— Mathews introduced a new series about aspiring wrestlers they’re producing, titled, Global Forged. Clips were shown of very normal looking people cutting not-so-great promos. Scott D’Amore said the series will be weekly — filmed in Canada — about people aspiring to be part of the GFW roster.
McMahon: Oh, please. I know John Gaburick rose to notoriety as part of Tough Enough, but the “wrestling reality show” idea is a really bad idea. We’ll see what the content is here, but “you want a shoot,” comment from one of the wrestlers has me guessing there will be a lot of exposing going on here. It’s amazing to me how much pro wrestling insists on exposing itself. Again, we all know it’s a work, but while I’m watching the show and suspending my disbelief for a few hours, I’d appreciate it if the company didn’t remind me that what I’m watching isn’t real.
(6) TAYA VALKYRIE vs. AMBER NOVA
Borash said Taya is the talk of the wrestling world. Mathews notes that Taya was trained by Lance Storm. Nova tried a hurricanrana and Taya converted it into a powerbomb. She went for the pin but lifted Nova at the two count. Taya hit her finisher on Nova for the win.
WINNER: Taya Valkyrie in 2:00
After the match, Valkyrie celebrated.
— Backstage, Eli Drake and Chris Adonis cut a promo.
(7) LOW KI vs. JOHNNY IMPACT — No. 1 contender match for the GFW Title
Borash and Mathews said the title shot for the winner will take place at Victory Road, which will be an Impact themed episode in two weeks. After back and forth action, Low Ki has thrown Impact to the outside as the show went to a break.
Back from the break the action is back in the ring and Borash said the match has been back-and-forth. Low Ki cut off Impact on the top turnbuckle and applied a sleeper in the corner, tied up in the ropes. After a count they had to separate. Impact landed a kick for a two count. Low Ki hit a running dropkick for a two count. Low Ki tried for a double stomp off the top but Impact moved and Low Ki got stuck in the ropes. Impact hit the Starship Pain for the win.
WINNER: Johnny Impact in 11:00.
After the match, Impact celebrated as Low Ki rolled to the outside. Eli Drake came out to the stage and Chris Adonis attacked Impact from behind, grabbing an Adonis Lock. Drake got into the ring with Impact out cold on the mat. Drake hit a Gravy Train.
McMahon: There was talk that Low Ki was unhappy not being in the title picture, and it led to him leaving GFW, but he looked great here and did a nice job getting Impact over. The match itself was good, albeit shorter than I expected. Drake is a good character, but prior to this match, I was looking forward to Low Ki-Impact more than Drake-Impact.
The post-match angle was well done. They needed to do something to generate some heat between these two ahead of their match.
— Backstage, Cornette was begging Lashley to reconsider. Lashley said he was there to say goodbye. Lashley said he was going back with his boys from ATT, because they appreciate him. Lashley pulled back on a handshake.
— Taya Valkyrie had words with Karen Jarrett backstage.
— In-ring: Lashley said he has a decision to make, and he thinks he shouldn’t have had to make a decision because he’s great at both. Lashley said he was forced to make a decision. He called ATT the greatest MMA organization around. Lashley said he was going home, and tonight was his last night in the Impact Zone. Lashley called out Moose.
Moose’s music hit and he walked to the ring. Moose got into the ring and hit Lashley with a cheap shot right hand. Lashley fought back and they brawled inside the ring and to the outside after Lashley clotheslined Moose over the top. Lashley took out Moose with a clothesline on the outside. Lashley powerbombed Moose to the floor on the outside. Lashley set up Moose for a spear but Moose came back with a boot to the face. Lashley and Moose continued to brawl into the crowd. As they brawled, there was a woman (a mom?) who had her chin on her hand and looked like she could not care less about the two large men brawling three feet from her. There was another family who just refused to get up from their seats. Weird visuals. Moose hit Lashley with a big boot. Near the video walls, they traded punches. Moose hit Lashley with a trash can. Moose and Lashley brawled on the stage. Mathews said Lashley brings in revenue for GFW because he’s a “huge star.” The brawl moved to ringside where Moose hit a spear. Moose rolled Lashley into the ring. Colby Kovington and the rest of American Top Team hit the ring. Kovington choked out Moose and then kicked Moose in the face. Security ran to the ring and they were beat up by ATT. Lashley and ATT stood over Moose to close the show.
McMahon: This was a really weird way to close the show. Obviously I don’t buy for a minute that Lashley is leaving the company, and no one else does either. Ending with cliffhangers is a good idea, but this one felt weird and out of place, especially if we just see American Top Team back on the show next week or the week after.
Overall, this was a good show, though. There was a big focus on in-ring action, which is preferred. There wasn’t a single in-ring talking segment until the end of the show. Well done, overall.