Multiverse Of Matches
April 1, 2022
Never one to miss a pop culture reference, Impact Wrestling is offering up two WrestleMania Weekend shows in 2022. The first is the Multiverse of Matches, a show so named because it’ll see many of Impact’s top names take on people from other promotions. The Forbidden Door is real, people!
On paper, I genuinely think this is one of the best shows of the entire weekend. Maybe even the best. I’m not just saying that as a fan of the promotion or because I’m this site’s resident Impact aficionado, but because it genuinely is. You’ve got numerous first-time matches that should be great bell-to-bell and help advance builds for their Rebellion PPV later in the month.
In terms of picking my most anticipated match on the card, I’m torn between two first-time singles matches: Eddie Edwards vs. Tomohiro Ishii and Mike Bailey vs. Alex Shelley.
Edwards, who is representing Pro Wrestling NOAH and Impact on this show, has had a new lease of life since turning heel earlier in the year. He’s always been a lover of the Japanese style and he should be a great foil for Ishii, who is great in every environment. To be honest, I’ll be quite happy if these two just stand in the middle of the ring and chop each other for 10 minutes until one of them falls down.
On a separate note, how good is it seeing Mike Bailey with a full set of bookings for a WrestleMania Weekend? He’s been a great addition to Impact already and I suspect he’ll have his best match to date with the promotion on this show against Alex Shelley. Shelley has produced a tremendous body of singles work over recent months and I don’t see any reason why this match won’t make the notebook if given enough time.
Chris Sabin against Jay White would have been another first-time singles match until about a week ago, when they faced off at the New Japan Strong tapings. That said, I’m still very excited to see what these two can produce. Their interactions in a recent tag match were very promising and both men have produced great singles work this year, most notably White’s match with Alex Shelley at Sacrifice and Sabin’s ROH title challenge against Jonathan Gresham at Hard to Kill in January.
Talking of Hard to Kill, two men who also had a great match there were Josh Alexander and Jonah. Those two both have big assignments locked in for Rebellion later in the month, Josh challenging Moose for the World title and Jonah facing off with the aforementioned Ishii, but on this night they’ll team up. Their opponents? Moose and the French-Canadian Frankenstein himself, PCO.
It’s crazy to think that it was only four years ago that PCO had that renaissance-sparking match with Walter—COVID has warped any sense I had of time proportion. Either way, he’s still great and this should be a brilliant all-star tag match.
There are two other noteworthy straight tag team matches on the show: The Good Brothers against The Briscoes and mixed tag action involving Mickie James, Nick Aldis, Matt Cardona, and Chelsea Green.
The booking of the Good Brothers-Briscoes match is likely to be influenced by the outcome of the Briscoes’ ROH title match with FTR earlier in the night but on paper, this is very fun. The Briscoes are good again, while The Good Brothers, now firmly back ensconced in the BULLET CLUB, have seemed much more motivated through the first quarter of 2022. The current record between these teams is 1-1 – who’ll win the rubber match?
The mixed tag match may not be as good bell-to-bell but it’s one of the most story-driven and promotionally interconnected matches on the show. James and Green were friends in Impact until the most recent set of tapings, where Green and Cardona turned on James and cost her her Knockouts title rematch against Tasha Steelz. Cardona, the currently Impact Digital Media Champion, is also the NWA Worlds Champion and his most recent defense came against, you guessed it, Aldis. Their match at the Crockett Cup ended with a Dusty Finish, special referee Jeff Jarrett disqualifying the wrong man, so that program is obviously going to continue. As you can see, there’s a great story running through this one and all of that is without mentioning that this will be Aldis’ first match in an Impact ring in almost five years.
Last but not least on this stacked card are three title matches, including the return of Ultimate X. A perennial crowd favorite, the last few Ultimate X matches have been really well laid out and this one, featuring Trey Miguel, Chris Bey, Jordynne Grace, Rich Swann, Vincent, and Willie Mack, is for Trey’s X-Division title.
While the X-Division title match is already booked for Rebellion, Trey defending against both Ace Austin and Mike Bailey, there’s every chance that they could go with a sneaky title change here. I don’t think they will, but you never know. Jordynne Grace will make history in this match, becoming the first woman to compete in an Ultimate X for a title. On paper, this is a great crop of people who should be able to work at a good pace, delivering a number of exciting, crowd-pleasing spots in what I suspect will be the show opener.
Deonna Purrazzo will again be putting her ROH and AAA Reina de Reinas titles on the line in the Champ-Champ Challenge, one that should have a really intriguing challenger with all the names floating about in Dallas during the weekend, while The Influence will be making the first defense of their Knockouts Tag Titles in a four-way also involving Tasha Steelz & Savannah Evans, Decay, and the first-time team of Gisele Shaw and Lady Frost.
As I said at the top of this preview, this promises, on paper at least, to be one of the best shows of the entire weekend. Given the quality and booking of Impact’s recent big shows, this should also absolutely deliver in practice. This whole show gets a big thumbs up from me – get your tickets if you’re in the area or get it ordered through FITE! I’m certain you won’t be disappointed.