IMPACT WRESTLING HITS & MISSES 12/3: Eddie Edward vs. Brian Cage vs. Michael Elgin, Moose Skit, ODB vs. Valkyre, Rascalz skit, Swinger vs. Pete Williams, RVD promo

By Javier Machado, PWTorch contributor


ODB (art credit Grant Gould (c) PWTorch)

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Overall – HIT: This was a good if otherwise unspectacular show. It felt more like a safe filler episode, one barely moving any of the current storylines forward. Some, like the story of “Suzie” and the Fallah Bahh-Desi Hit Squad angle, only got a minute or two of screen time, only enough to remind you that they exist. We also got a set up for the start of the Tag Team Open next week. It was also very nice to see ODB again despite the circumstances that brought her back.

Eddie Edwards vs. Brian Cage – HIT: Prior to the match, Elgin was interviewed regarding his disqualification from the number one contender six-man gauntlet match two weeks ago. He ominously promised to beat up someone over it. The match is good. It is a bit methodical at first but it never becomes boring. Cage dominates Eddie with his strength, Eddie counters with his technical acumen. The fans were into the match, but just as the match was about to hit the next gear… a wild ELGIN appears.

Eddie Edwards vs. Brian Cage vs. Michael Elgin – HIT: Michael Elgin appears and clotheslines both Eddie and Cage. Taking a page out of the WWE booking manual, Impact management makes the match a triple threat. As far as triple threats go, this is an excellent version of one. None of the wrestlers stay out of the action for long, constantly swapping offense amongst the three. Elgin wins by doing the buckle bomb on Eddie into Cage, who was in the corner, which takes out Cage. Elgin then hits the Elgin bomb on Eddie for the win. Good, exciting start to the show, though I’m curious at what was the purpose, if any, to this match

Rascalz skit – MISS: Trey is upset at Ace Austin over his comment about Trey’s hot mom two weeks ago. The Rascalz, particularly Wentz, need to tone down their over-acting. These skits can be good if a little bit of subtlety is used. Trey was good in his interactions with his mother, so I know there is something good here, but they need better direction.

Moose skit – HIT: Moose is walking the streets of New York, blowing off his loss in the number one contender six-man gauntlet match two weeks ago, citing Muhammad Ali and Conor McGregor as legends who had a big loss. He comes across a basketball court and is eager to prove is athletic superiority. The two men he runs into recognize him and have seen Impact before, so they want no part in dealing with Moose lest they end up like tennis guy or golf guy. Moose promises them beer if he hits his first-ever three point shot and forces them to stay. Miraculously, Moose makes the shot, and the three celebrate. Moose then beats them up. Moose is officially a guilty pleasure for me.

ODB – PASS: It doesn’t feel right to give this a HIT or MISS due to it stemming from a real-life situation. Josh Mathews is in the ring to introduce ODB. ODB runs a food truck as her life-after-wrestling job. The food truck burned down and ODB is having problems with the insurance company. Impact, for their part, is donating all ticket proceeds from the Melrose Ballroom to ODB and they promote the Indiegogo website for donations. Taya Valkyrie then comes out to run ODB down, setting up a match for later in the show.

Reno Scum & Ace Austin vs. The Rascalz – HIT: Reno Scum, Adam Thornstowe and Luster the Legend, have not really impressed me until this match. This is a great, fast moving match with plenty of impressively timed tandem offense. The Trey-Austin feud gets furthered when, while on the offensive, Trey Miguel climbs the ropes to finish a downed Thornstowe, only to spy Ace Austin flirting with Trey’s mom. Trey abandons the ring to attack Austin. The rest of the Rascalz lose the momentum of the match leading to Thornstowe pinning Wentz with a schoolboy roll up and a handful of tights.

RVD promo – MISS: RVD and Katie Forbes come to the ring so RVD can explain his actions and change of demeanor. He essentially reinforces the idea that all the wrestlers of today copying his moves are trying to actually “be” him and that the fans expect him to keep raising the bar of wrestling. Tommy Dreamer interrupts and offers RVD a match with Rhino with Dreamer as the guest referee. RVD declines, feeling that ECW is the past and that the ECW guys are holding him back. Then Rhino runs in an attacks RVD. While the segment wasn’t bad per se, why are we getting another ECW rehash? RVD and Rhino should be getting the younger talent over and either taking a loss hurts their equity when facing the next young opponent.

Rich Swann & Willie Mack & The North backstage segment – HIT:Intriguing things are afoot when Willie Mack and other wrestlers in the back are celebrating Swann’s stellar performance in the number one contender six-man gauntlet match two weeks ago. Using expository dialogue, Rich and Willie reveal they would be taking part of a tag team open to find the number one contender for the tag team titles. The North, Ethan Page and Josh Alexander, come in and congratulate Swann, planting the idea that Swann is better off as a solo wrestler and that Willie Mack may be holding him back. Willie seemed to take the North’s words to heart.

Johnny Swinger vs. Petey Williams – MISS: Earlier on the show, Johnny Swinger complains to Joey Ryan about the lack of respect from younger wrestlers (he’s referring to his spat with Petey Williams, Swinger is stuck in the 90’s). He offers to form the “Kliq” with Joey. Joey ostensibly agrees to shut Swinger up. The match was pedestrian and when Swinger call for Joey, Joey was a no-show. Petey win with a sharpshooter. Hard pass from me.

ODB vs. Taya Valkyrie – HIT: Taya was great as usual this match, viciously attacking ODB with villainous glee. ODB was able to keep John E. Bravo at bay by getting him drunk and hitting him with her signature motorboat spot. Eventually a drunken Bravo walks off with the belt declaring himself the champion (the crowd supported him in his delusion by chanting “he’s the champ”). Jordynne Grace intercepts Bravo on the ramp and takes the belt. ODB takes the opportunity to surprise a distracted Taya with a schoolboy roll up for the pin. Taya hastily leaves the ring, wanting no part of Grace. The action in the match was okay, but the real story is the great character work from Taya and ODB. The last image was ODB and Grace sharing the ring in mutual respect.


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