MCMAHON’S IMPACT WRESTLING REPORT 1/25: Genesis, Triple Threat Title match, Moose vs. Lashley, LVN vs. Allie, Sydal vs. ECIII

BY MIKE MCMAHON, PWTORCH CONTRIBUTOR


MCMAHON’S “GENESIS” IMPACT WRESTLING REPORT
Jan. 25, 2018
Taped from Ottawa, Ont. (Aberdeen Pavilion)
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 impactlivecast@gmail.com


— Highlights from last week’s episode were shown.

— Mathews and Borash ran down tonight’s card.

(1) MATT SYDAL vs ECIII — Impact Grand Championship match

There would be no rounds for this match. Sydal controlled the early portion of the match with fast-paced action and went for an early cover. Mathews called it smash-mouth offense. Impact announced that the Brace for Impact WrestlePro show will air on Twitch. Sydal hit knees off the top rope for a two count at the 6:00 mark.

[c]

Back from the break at the 12:00 mark ECIII was in control. Sydal quickly threw ECIII to the outside. ECIII came back with a DDT on the apron. Back in the ring, ECIII went for a powerbomb but Sydal countered into a hurricanrana. Sydal hit a knee to ECIII and then went for the Air Bourne off the top but ECIII moved and Sydal landed on his feet. ECIII tossed Sydal into the corner. ECIII hit a One Percenter. ECIII mocked Sydal for choking. ECIII put Sydal on his shoulders and tried for a TK3 off the top but Sydal elbowed his way out and then hit a shooting star press for the win.

WINNER: Matt Sydal wins the Grand Championship in 16:00.

After the match, Matt Sydal celebrated as Borash threw to a replay.

McMahon: Could Jeremy Borash sound any less interested in what’s going on? Seriously … Borash exclaimed Sydal as the new champion as robotic and monotone as possible. Andrew Soucek and I have complained about the commentary for more than a year on our post-Impact PWTorch Livecasts. It continues to be bad. No emotion. If Jeremy Borash isn’t excited, why should I be?

This match was pretty good. They told a good story and it was a big moment for Sydal (probably his biggest since joining Impact Wrestling last year). But the moment lacked emotion because the announce team lacked emotion. It’s really hurting the show. 

As for where they go from here with the Grand Championship … who knows. They abandoned the round system for this match and it make for a much better viewing experience. They could make this a secondary singles title, like the U.S. or Intercontinental belts, but get rid of the round system. I thought it was a good idea when they started it, but the execution has been poor. 

— Borash and Mathews showed stills of Barbed Wire Massacre III.

— Drake, El Patron and Impact were shown warming up.

[c]

(2) ALLIE vs. LAUREL VAN NESS — Knockouts Championship Match

Allie and LVN grapple early and end up rolling out of the ring. The match remained on the outside and Allie chopped LVN up against the apron.

[c]

Back from the break, LVN is giving the boots to Allie in the corner. LVN throws a punch and then DDTs Allie off the middle rope for a two count. LVN controlled Allie on the mat. LVN slowed the match down with a chinlock and the crowd booed. Allie and LVN traded forearm shots and LVN clotheslined Allie. Allie threw the boots to LVN in the corner and then suplexed her into the buckle for a two count. Allie hit a codebreaker for a near fall. LVN hit a curb stomp for a two count. Allie hit a superkick for a two count, when LVN gets her foot on the rope. The ref got bumped after an elbow from LVN. With the referee down, LVN hit Allie with the title belt and picked up the cover for the win.

WINNER: Laurel Van Ness retained the championship in 15:00.

McMahon: Why was Laurel allowed to keep the title in the corner? Isn’t it usually kept at the timekeeper’s table, or something. I’ve never seen a champion just keep the belt in the corner of the ring before. Borash or Mathews never mentioned that it was there until the finish of the match. Someone needs to point that out, or at least wonder why she was able to keep it there, considering it goes against everything they’ve ever done. Instead they just gave Laurel credit for putting the belt there so she could use it.

The finish was lame, but it was an otherwise strong match. Some of the near falls with Allie were believable. There were a few times it felt like she was going to win the title.

[c]

(3) BOBBY LASHLEY (w/ Dan Lambert & KM) vs. MOOSE

Lashley takes down Moose and goes for strikes early. Lashley threw elbows in the corner and hit Moose with a suplex. Moose chopped Lashley in the corner as the crowd chanted for Moose, who then hit a crossbody. KM grabbed Moose’s ankle when he was running the ropes and Lashley was able to take out Moose with a clothesline. Lashley got out of the ring and argued with KM, telling him not to interfere.

[c]

The match was on the outside when they came back from the break. Lashley threw Moose into the steps. KM tried to approach Moose and Lashley cut him off and told him to back off. KM pulled a table out from under the ring and he slid it into the ring. Lashley stopped him and tried to kick it out of the ring. Moose drilled Lashley and then charged him in the corner with a hesitation dropkick. Moose landed a Go to Hell Chokeslam off the top for a two count. Lashley hit a hurricanrana (seriously) and a spear, but Moose got his foot on the rope. KM got on the apron, which distracted Lashley. Moose threw Lashley into KM and hit a spear for a two count. Moose hit the Game Changer clothesline for the win.

WINNER: Moose in 17:00.

After the match, Moose cornered Dan Lambert, but he was able to slip out of the ring before Moose could get his hands on him. Lambert screamed at Lashley on the outside that “this was your fault!” Lambert shoved Lashley. KM tried to get between them. Lashley dropped KM with a spear. Lashley threw Lambert into the ring and Moose hit Lambert with a huge kick. Moose then grabbed the table that KM put in the ring. Moose propped the table up in the corner as Lashley walked back in the ring. Moose pointed at the table and Lashley speared Lambert through the table in the corner. Moose and Lashley shook hands. John Harnet, the injured ATT guy who was still in a neck brace, rolled into the ring to check on Lambert. Lashley grabbed Harnet and dropped him with a Rock Bottom and Moose then speared him. Lashley raised Moose’s hand and endorsed him.

McMahon: Whelp, that looks like it was the end of American Top Team. It certainly felt like some closure. Also, Bobby Lashley is a babyface again, so that’s fun.

This also felt like it could have been an ending for Lashley, getting the clean loss and then endorsing Moose after the match. However, it’s become apparent he was at the last set of tapings. 

[c]

(4) TAIJI ISHIMORI vs. ANDREW EVERETT — X Division Championship match

This match was taped from Pro Wrestling NOAH in Tokyo. The match was joined in progress. Ishimori got spiked on a hurricanrana for a two count. Ishimori was not moving and Everett went for a top-rope dive but Ishimori put up his knees. Ishimori turned Everett inside out with a clothesline for a two count. Ishimori hit a 450 for the win.

WINNER: Taiji Ishimori retains the X Division Championship

After the match, Borash threw to a replay. Everett raised Ishimori’s hand after the match.

McMahon: Andrew Everett is a babyface again, I guess.

Good match, from what we saw of it. I’m a big fan of Ishimori and that’s growing almost every week. Everett is great in the ring but there’s something missing from the total package. I think he needs a character makeover. 

(5) ELI DRAKE vs. JOHNNY IMPACT vs. ALBERTO EL PATRON — Steel Cage match for the Global Championship

Patron and Eli Drake went to work on Impact right at the opening bell. Patron and Eli Drake both tried to climb the cage at the same time after double-teaming Impact. Impact threw punches at Patron in the corner. Impact hit Drake with a twist of fate for a two count. Borash said that pinfalls, submissions or a cage escape all determine the winner of the match. After not getting the pin, Impact tried to climb the cage but Patron cut him off and then Patron clotheslined him. El Patron tried for his turnbuckle stomp from the top of the cage, but Impact moved (or rather, stopped holding himself up). Why didn’t El Patron just climb over the cage and, you know, win the match?

[c]

All three men are brawling when we came back from the break. Impact and Patron climbed the cage and Impact began to known Patron off the cage. Patron grabbed Impact by the hair and flung him down. Impact was stuck in the turnbuckle and he avoided a turnbuckle stomp again. Impact hit Patron with an elbow off the top as Patron had the cross armbreaker on Drake. Impact knocked everyone off the cage, and instead of climbing out for the win, decided to dive off the top of the cage onto Patron and Drake. Patron tried to get out of the door but Impact grabbed him. Meanwhile, Drake was climbing over the cage on the outside. Patron kicked Impact and charged at the door, but Adonis slammed the door shut on Patron’s head. Drake was perched on top of the cage and he made it to the floor before Impact, because Adonis caught Impact as he dove to the outside.

WINNER: Eli Drake retains the Global Champion in 19:00.

McMahon: Why didn’t El Patron just climb over the cage instead of trying for that turnbuckle stomp? Honestly, that move must be the dumbest move in all of professional wrestling. The match felt a little generic. Impact isn’t a particularly strong babyface and that hurt the emotional flow of the match. It didn’t feel like there was anyone there the crowd really cared about winning. Drake did draw some good heat, however.

Patron is the most confusing character on the show. He’s a heel one week, tweener the next, then he’s acting like a babyface. He seemed to be working heel here, which is fine because he’s not a relatable whatsoever. There just aren’t many — or any — babyface qualities about him. And knowing his history outside of the ring makes that even more pronounced. 

That being said, the finish to this match was well done. In fact, I’d say it was the best use of Adonis since he’s been in the company. 

Overall, a good show that focused on in-ring action, which was a nice change of pace. Honestly, I would be fine if every episode focused this much on the ring. There wasn’t a single in-ring promo and limited video packages. It was an enjoyable two hours.

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