Impact Wrestling – September 28, 2023: Dang They’re Good At This
Date: September 28, 2023
Location: Graceland Live, Memphis, Tennessee
Commentators: Matthew Rehwoldt, Tom Hannifan
We’re done with the 1000th episode celebrations and after all that fun, it’s time to look ahead towards Bound For Glory. The main event is officially set but we need to build up a lot more before the show. As for tonight, Alan Angels is challenging Chris Sabin for the X-Division Title. Let’s get to it.
X-Division Title: Chris Sabin vs. Alan Angels
Angels is cashing in his title shot after winning Ultimate X last week. Sabin grabs a headlock to start before pulling Angels into a bow and arrow hold. That’s broken up and they get back to a standoff. Angels chops away in the corner but gets armdragged into an armbar to slow things down a bit. That’s broken up and Angels goes after the arm as well, including a top rope double stomp. Angels’ armbar isn’t so well received, though Rehwoldt isn’t sure which one they think sucks.
Sabin fights up and tries the Cradle Shock but the arm gives out. Angels faceplants him into the Rings of Saturn but Sabin reverses into a cradle for two. A tornado DDT onto the arm sets up the Rings again, only to have Sabin escape again. Angels goes for the title so the referee takes it away, allowing Angels to kick him low. The Halo Strike gives Angels two but Sabin kicks him in the back. Now the Cradle Shock can retain the title at 8:57.
Rating: B. Sabin is one of the rare guys who can have a good match with anyone and he did that here with a game Angels. I like that they got the Ultimate X title shot out of the way rather quickly, as they just had Kushida holding his title shot for such a long time. As usual, the X-Division makes for a good opener and they did well here.
Post match a video from Kenta plays on the screen, saying he’ll be at Bound For Glory. Sabin approves.
Alex Shelley respects Josh Alexander but he needs Alexander to respect the fact that the title is his. At Bound For Glory, step up to the plate and take your best swing, because he’ll be throwing his best pitch.
Rhino vs. Jack Price
Rhino shoulders him down to start but Price manages to take it to the floor. A clothesline drops Price again on the floor, followed by the running shoulder to the ribs back inside. The Gore finishes Price at 2:13.
Post match Steve Maclin jumps Rhino and the fight is on. The threat of a Gore sends Maclin running.
Tasha Steelz is fired up after last week and she’s back to take over the division. Deonna Purrazzo comes in to say it was nice teaming together last week and maybe they should continue that alliance. Steelz is in, because this company LOVES some evil Knockouts teaming up.
Alisha Edwards and Eddie Edwards insist that this is NOT ever with Frankie Kazarian and Traci Brooks. Traci beat Alisha, but Kazarian didn’t beat Eddie. Kazarian comes in and says let’s do it in the ring. Works for Eddie, as they’re going to end it.
Here are Joe Hendry and Yuya Uemura for Uemura’s big goodbye ceremony. Hendry says he’s usually here to be emotional but he’s feeling bad this week. They got the Feast or Fired briefcase and as a result, Uemura is fired. Sometimes you have to be grateful for the memories that you have and he does not regret their team at all. Uemura thanks the fans but here are the Rascalz to interrupt.
They laugh at the fact that Uemura will never be a champion, but it wouldn’t have mattered if he got the Tag Team Title shot anyway because he would have failed. Hendry calls them the second and third best Rascalz but they come back with the Goodbye Song. The fight is on until Santino Marella comes out to interrupt. He isn’t letting this go to waste, because we’re going to have a tag match tonight. This won’t be a title match, but it will be for Uemura’s job.
Joe Hendry/Yuya Uemura vs. Rascalz
Non-title. Uemura strikes away at Miguel to start as the Rascalz aren’t sure what to do. We take an early break and come back with Uemura in trouble. Wentz hits a slingshot hilo for two and a dropkick to cut Uemura down for two more. Uemura gets taken into the wrong corner for some choking and eye raking, much to Hendry’s annoyance. A knockdown gets Uemura out of trouble though and it’s back to Hendry to pick the pace way up.
Back to back fall away slams send the Rascalz flying and then a double fall away slam does it again. A double superkicks drops Hendry though and the Rascalz kick away at Uemura. Some running uppercuts in the corner have Uemura in trouble but Hendry pulls Wentz out of the air. A toss cutter gives Hendry a rather close two so Uemura comes in to strike away, leaving all four of them down. Another toss cutter hits Miguel but Wentz makes the save. Hendry and Wentz go up the ramp, leaving Miguel to kick Uemura low. That and some spray paint to the eyes set up the small package to give Miguel the pin at 10:19.
Rating: B-. They had me buying that they might pull the upset here and it’s nice to see Hendry and Uemura having such chemistry together. They didn’t last long but they were a fun team for a little while. That being said, I’ll take what I can get when it comes to the champions not dropping a non-title match.
Gisele Shaw is ready to beat Trinity tonight and move on to Bound For Glory to win the Knockouts Title.
Deaner blames the liars for the failures of the Design and singles out Eric Young. He will return to his throne in his tower, sitting next to the monster that he can trust. That would be Kon, because the tower will be rebuilt on his shoulders. It starts next week with Josh Alexander. The hero dies in Alexander’s story and oh my goodness these guys are awful.
Tommy Dreamer/Heath vs. Sheldon Jean/Kenny King
Street fight. The brawl starts on the floor with Dreamer grabbing a beer from a fan before getting inside for the opening bell. Dreamer’s middle rope elbow only hits an open chair but Heath is up to deck Jean. King send Heath into a chair in the corner and it’s time to bring in an old ladder.
Heath gets rammed into various metal objects and a spinebuster puts Dreamer through a trashcan. Heath is back up though and cleans house, including the Wake Up Call to Jean. Naturally that means it’s table time with said table being sat up in the corner. King kicks Heath in the head and adds a Blockbuster to Dreamer. The slingshot dive to the floor hits Heath but he’s fine enough to backdrop King on the ramp. They fight to the back, leaving Dreamer to Dreamer Driver Jean through the table for the win at 8:35.
Rating: C+. This was a hard hitting enough fight but there is only so much you’re going to be able to get out of these four having this kind of a match. It was nothing we haven’t seen before but Dreamer could have this kind of a match in his sleep. Heath continues to impress me, as he’s a fine hand for a spot like this and the whole thing did what it needed to do.
Post match Crazzy Steve, sans face paint, runs in to hit Dreamer with the briefcase. Steve says the briefcase is his beginning.
Gail Kim will induct Traci Brooks into the Hall Of Fame.
ABC wants to get rid of the Good Hands before they go after the Rascalz and the Tag Team Titles. Since the Hands always have something to say about the fans, we should do Fans’ Revenge, with fans around the ring carrying leather straps. John Skyler comes in to say not in Memphis because Jason Hotch is home with his new baby. Bey says go find someone else to be your partner then.
Jonathan Gresham vs. Mike Bailey
Gresham takes him up against the rope to start but won’t fire off the chop. They go to the mat with Bailey bouncing out and we have another standoff. Back up and Bailey flips Gresham with a headlock takeover and we take a break. We come back with Bailey hitting a corkscrew Asai moonsault but Gresham atomic drops him back inside.
The Boston crab goes on in the middle of the ring but a strong crawl gets Bailey over to the ropes. They fight over a suplex until Gresham muscles him over for two. Gresham rolls him up a few more times for two more each but frustration sets in. Finally, Gresham grabs a handful of trunks and gets the pin at 12:08.
Rating: B-. I really like that finish as it isn’t something I would have expected. You’ll often see someone go for pin after pin but this time Gresham got sick of the wrestling and went to the cheating. That’s a nice twist and they made it work here, though Bailey dropping a fall before his Bound For Glory match against Will Ospreay is a surprise.
Post match Bailey protests the cheating but Gresham walks away without saying a word.
Moose, with Brian Myers, has his World Title briefcase ready, but he’s been in tag team matches lately. Therefore, he’ll have a warmup singles match next week against anyone who wants to face him.
Steve Maclin comes up to Bully Ray, asking for his help with Rhino. Ray will talk to Rhino, but that’s not what Maclin had in mind. Maclin accuses him of going soft, which doesn’t sit well with Ray.
Here’s what’s coming on various shows.
Gisele Shaw vs. Trinity
Non-title and Shaw has Savannah Evans and Jai Vidal in her corner. They fight over wrist control to start until Trinity kicks her in the face. Trinity slides underneath a clothesline and hits a splits splash for two. We take a break and come back with Shaw hitting a charge in the corner and grabbing a chinlock. That doesn’t last long so Shaw goes up, puts a knee on the back of Trinity’s head, and drives her down for two more. A middle rope double stomp to the ribs crushes Trinity again and it’s time to talk trash to the crowd.
We hit the chinlock again but Trinity fights up and hits some hard forearms. Some shots to the ribs set up a Samoan drop for two, followed by a middle rope crossbody for the same. Shaw is right back with Shock And Awe for two of his own, followed by a shocked kickout face. Shaw’s running knee is blocked and Trinity hits a handing Pedigree for two more. Vidal accidentally trips Shaw down and Starstruck gives Trinity the win at 12:10.
Rating: B-. These two were starting to roll by the end and it made for a solid match. Shaw continues to improve and is looking more comfortable against these bigger stars. That being said, Trinity is going to need someone special to challenger her for the title at Bound For Glory and that is a level Shaw hasn’t reached yet.
Post match the beatdown is on but Mickie James makes the save. Mickie talks about their friendship and says she’s stood beside Trinity before. She never lost that Knockouts Title though and she has a rematch clause. The match is on for Bound For Glory.
Overall Rating: B. This show had a good mixture of in-ring action and building things up for Bound For Glory. They managed to make this work after two weeks that were mainly celebrations and that is not the easiest trick to pull off. In other words, Impact did well again and we are to the point where that is not even close to a surprise anymore.
Chris Sabin b. Alan Angels – Cradle Shock
Rhino b. Jack Price – Gore
Rascalz b. Joe Hendry/Yuya Uemura – Small package to Uemura
Tommy Dreamer/Heath b. Sheldon Jean/Kenny King – Dreamer Driver through a table
Jonathan Gresham b. Mike Bailey – Rollup with a handful of trunks
Trinity b. Gisele Shaw – Starstruck
Remember to follow me on Twitter @kbreviews and head over to my Amazon author page with 30 different cheap wrestling books at: