This week I thought I’d do something a little different with my Impact column. Instead of talking about the ongoing saga between LAX and the OGz, Rich Swann’s imminent return or the unholy alliance between Austin Aries and Killer Kross, I decided I’d offer up a preview of next week’s special episode, ReDefined.
Impact Wrestling’s ReDefined will, at the time of writing, feature four matches and the second episode of Scarlett Bordeaux’s ‘Smokeshow’ with Katarina, Grado and Joe Hendry. These Impact specials this year have usually been built well and have often featured high-quality matches so it seemed worthwhile to preview it.
Likely to open the show is a clash between Rich Swann and Petey Williams. Swann was set to take part in the four-way at Slammiversary with Johnny Impact, Fenix and Taiji Ishimori but got concussed at MLW’s Battle Riot event and was replaced by Williams. Since then Williams has taken on Ishimori in singles competition and then partnered up with the Bone Soldier to defeat the Desi Hit Squad.
Given the video package they did with Swann this week and the fact he’s now locked into a long-term deal with Impact, he feels like he’s on course for a prominent spot at Bound for Glory, potentially in an X-Division title match. Williams remains a solid hand and a useful part of the roster, but it makes much more sense for Swann to go over in his return and set him on the way to title contention.
Talking of the X-Division, Brian Cage will defend his title for the second time at ReDefined against Fenix. The Mexican luchador is fresh off a brilliant win against Sami Callihan (honestly, go check it out, the match was great) and feels like a fresh challenger for the title. So fresh, in fact, that this is actually a first time ever match-up, something Impact have consistently provided this year. Cage spoke for the first time this week and his reign has barely begun, so the result of the match is more or less a foregone conclusion, but it should be a chance for him to go out there and steal the show, helping him further establish himself as the face of the division.
Another foregone conclusion of this show is the Knockouts Title match between current champ Su Yung, Allie and Tessa Blanchard. Not because of clear booking or Don Callis’ obvious love for Tessa on commentary, but because Impact shared the interview Tessa did with TMZ after winning the title. I therefore can’t really preview what happens at ReDefined but I think Tessa taking the strap is the right call. Su Yung’s character stuff is so odd and her feud with Allie doesn’t need the title. Belting up Tessa and letting her run with it makes sense and it’ll be interesting to see where she goes from here.
What’s likely to main event the show is a tag team match between Impact World Champion Austin Aries and his new buddy Killer Kross against the deranged Eddie Edwards and the returning Moose. To my mind the main event of Bound for Glory will be Eddie Edwards against Austin Aries for that world title, and it very much feels like a video game where Edwards will need to compete a series of levels, like this match and beating Kross, before getting to face the Boss, in this case Aries. To that effect it doesn’t really matter whether he wins here or not alongside Moose, and I do suspect they lose. A win for Aries and Kross establishes their dominance at the top of the company and makes Edwards latest redemption story all the more interesting.
Talking of interesting, perhaps the most fascinating sub-plot of this is Moose. Obviously the big man got concussed at Slammiversary and therefore missed the last month of TV, and it’s hard to tell where he fits in here but listening to Don Callis’ commentary gives you a good idea. He tried to sell how much Edwards had no friends left and the tension that existed between him and Moose during his feud with Tommy Dreamer, meaning that they may not work well together next week against the seemingly unified tandem of Aries and Kross. That could signal one of two things – either Edwards and Moose get the win and then Moose lays him out, or they lose because Moose aligns with Aries and Kross. Either way it seems to me like Moose is turning heel here and will be yet another obstacle for Edwards to overcome as he looks to regain the world title.
Anyway, I’m looking forward to next week and so should you.
The Week in Review
- Viewership crept up slightly this week, hitting 212,000. It’s still low but it’s an improvement and ReDefined next week should be a stellar show.
- The visual of Grado pole dancing was simultaneously the best and worst thing I’ve seen this year. Preferably never again though, for all our sakes.
- Fallah Bahh and KM are a delight together and their matching ring gear is mint. No, neither of them are terrific, but they are a whole load of fun and I’m enjoying it.
- It was great to see Zachary Wentz make his official Impact debut this week, albeit in a losing effort to Matt Sydal. I’m intrigued to see where Sydal fits in now, but I’m also salivating at the thought of Wentz being in Impact full-time and teaming with his buddy Dezmond Xavier. Xavier was absent from the last two sets of tapings to my knowledge, which is a shame, but I want The Rascalz against DJZ and Andrew Everett at Bound for Glory. You know it makes sense Don and Scott. You know it.
- Sami Callihan and Pentagon Jr’s Mexican Death Match was a tad below their classic at Slammiversary, but it was a lot of fun and it was good to see Callihan get the win. Pentagon has so much cache he can take those losses but they were starting to build up for Callihan and now him and OvE are free to move on to a new programme.
- That segment with LAX and the OGz this week was too much for me and probably everyone else. Keep it real boys, keep it real.
- Finally, just a quick PSA. NEVILLE IS A FREE MAN. BRING ADRIAN IN AND HAVE HIM WRESTLE EVERYONE. THANK YOU.
Well, until next time…