Date: December 8, 2022
Location: Old Paristown Hall, Louisville, Kentucky
Commentators: Tom Hannifan, Matthew Rehwoldt
The slow build towards Hard To Kill continues as we still have over a month to go before the show. That means a lot more Bully Ray, who dominated the first fourth of last week’s show and will probably be around again this week. Other than that, it might be nice to hear some more from the World Champion Josh Alexander, so let’s get to it.
We look at Deaner killing Eric Young off last week.
Deaner talks about how Violent By Design is a movement, not a group of people. Now it is time to take out Sami Callihan.
Tag Team Titles: Motor City Machine Guns vs. Heath/Rhino
Heath/Rhino are defending. Rhino powers Sabin around to start but Sabin is up with a middle rope spinning crossbody for two. Heath comes in and gets his arm worked over but manages to send Shelley into the corner. Shelley charges into a raised boot in the corner, only to have Sabin twist Heath’s leg around the rope to take over. A dragon screw legwhip gives Sabin two and Shelley grabs the logical Figure Four.
Heath slaps his way out of trouble and gets to the rope, setting up a powerslam. Rhino and Sabin come in off the double tag to pick up the pace, with Rhino’s spinebuster getting two. Everything breaks down and Heath is sent outside, leaving Rhino to TKO Sabin for two more. Sabin takes out Heath’s knee again…and the Major Players come in for the double DQ at 8:30.
Rating: C+. This was starting to cook when the ending cut things off. The Players are a more interesting option right now and odds are this sets up a three way down the line. That isn’t the worst idea as the Players should have been Tag Team Champions a good while ago. Beating the popular champs and the Guns would be a nice way to get there, as this match showed what the other two can do on their own.
We look at Bully Ray going full villain on Josh Alexander and everyone else.
Alexander rants to Scott D’Amore and says he’s dealing with this his way tonight. With Alexander gone, Johnny Swinger and Zicky Dice come in, with Swinger saying he wants a title shot. D’Amore says win fifty matches and it’s his. Swinger: “So you’re saying there’s a chance!”
Mickie James and Jordynne Grace have a tense but respectful photo shoot together.
Savannah Evans vs. Taya Valkyrie
Tasha Steelz and the rest of the Death Dollz are here too. Steelz powers her down to start as commentary makes Steiner Math references. Taya is knocked to the apron where she lands in the splits, only to be sent to the floor. We take a break and come back with Tay fighting out of a chinlock. A clothesline and Blue Thunder Bomb give Valkyrie two and it’s off to some weird double leglock. Taya switches into something like an STF but Evans grabs the hair to escape. A hard knee to the face rocks Evans, who is right back with a full nelson slam for the upset pin at 10:21.
Rating: C. Just when I had my “Evans never wins anything” loaded up, Evans goes and wins something. You do need to give her something like this every now and then, though it’s more than a little weird to see her beat someone as successful as Taya. Still though, interesting result that can do a lot more for Evans that it would have for Valkyrie.
Video on Ace Austin and Chris Bey in the New Japan Super Junior Tag League.
Moose attacks Bhupinder Gujjar as a message to Joe Hendry.
Delirious wants Eddie Edwards. The match is set for tonight.
Kon vs. Sami Callihan
The rest of Design (yes Design, minus the Violent By) is here with Kon. Callihan strikes away to start and pokes Kon in the eye to cut him off. Kon hits a hard shot in the corner and the stomping is on. A spinebuster lets Kon hammer away even more and we hit the nerve hold. Back up and Sami hits a running forearm for one but Kon pulls him outside. The chokeslam onto the apron rocks Sami again but he fights back anyway. The Design offers some distractions though and Kon hits a Death Valley Driver for the pin at 6:24.
Rating: C. This was ok, though calling it The Design and having a former member of the Ascension as part of the team in 2022 is a bit hard to grasp. Kon is an acceptable enough power guy but he isn’t likely to light the world on fire. Sami is going to need some help to fight these guys off and that probably doesn’t bode well.
Josh Alexander blows off Tommy Dreamer. He’s learning.
Trey Miguel spray painted his former pupil Jason Hodge on Before The Impact.
Miguel doesn’t find spray painting people, or the X-Division Title for that matter, disrespectful. Crazzy Steve comes in to say he paints with blood and Miguel seems to have a new challenger.
Here is Josh Alexander, in gear, for a chat. He wants to get out some of this aggression so it’s open challenge time, and he’ll even put the title on the line. So get out here Bully Ray, because he still has his Hard To Kill shot no matter what. Ray pops up on screen to make sure he understands everything. He’s busy right now though, as he is looking at photos of himself terrifying Josh Alexander and Alexander’s wife, so he’ll see Alexander at Hard To Kill. Instead here is Mike Bailey to say he’ll take the shot.
Impact Wrestling World Title: Mike Bailey vs. Josh Alexander
Alexander is defending and runs Bailey over with a shoulder to start. Back up and an exchange of shoulders goes nowhere so they run the ropes, with Bailey scoring off a kick to the chest. A knee to the ribs puts Bailey down as well but he’s right back with the bouncing kicks to send Alexander outside. There’s the big running flip dive to keep Bailey in control as we take a break.
Back with Alexander driving some knees into the back and cranking on both arms. Alexander gets two off a backbreaker but Bailey dropkicks his way out of trouble. The back is fine enough for the running corkscrew shooting star press for two on Alexander. Not that it seems to matter as Alexander is back up with some rolling German suplexes. The ankle lock is broken up in a hurry though and Bailey kicks the arm. An armbar stays on the arm and Alexander can’t get out, leaving Bailey to hit a poisonrana.
We take a break and come back with Alexander working on the back some more. The C4 Spike is countered into a hurricanrana for two and Bailey kicks him down. Bailey misses the Ultimate Weapon but Alexander still can’t hit the C4 Spike. They crash out to the floor and Bailey kicks him off the apron. The running moonsault to the floor drops Alexander again and they go back inside to slug it out. Both of them fall outside again and we take a break.
We come back again (over thirty minutes in now) with Bailey snapping the arm across the top rope. The Flamingo Driver is countered into a torture rack slam though and Alexander slaps on the ankle lock. With that broken up, Bailey gets his feet up in the corner, setting up the Ultimate Weapon. Bailey suddenly remembers that he is supposed to have a sore ankle though and they’re both down. Back to back kicks to the chest keep Alexander down and a third second sets up moonsault knees to the same chest. Bailey, WITH THE BAD KNEE, is fine enough to try the bouncing kicks, earning himself more rolling German suplexes.
We take another break and come back again with Alexander getting the ankle lock in the ropes. Since that doesn’t count, Alexander goes with the Angle Slam as we’re told that Eddie Edwards vs. Delirious will be moved to next week. Alexander misses a moonsault but is back up to catch Bailey with a super Angle Slam for another double knockdown. The ankle lock goes on again and Bailey can’t flip his way out. Alexander even gets a grapevine but Bailey manages to make the rope.
They both go up top as we have four minutes left in the hour time limit. Bailey knocks him off the top and hits the Ultimate Weapon for two more. Back up and Bailey kicks away, only to have the Flamingo Driver countered into a Styles Clash. The ankle lock goes on again, sending Bailey to the ropes again. We have a minute left and Alexander hits back to back C4 Spikes to retain at 59:50.
Rating: B+. Well that came out of nowhere. This was the long, epic style match that you do not see on television in any promotion save for once in a very long while. These guys beat each other up and if you ignore Bailey’s still absurd selling issues, it was pretty awesome. Alexander takes out another name and they even surprised me by not going to the time limit draw in the end. Bailey will probably be back, but for now this worked rather well as a big time surprise.
Overall Rating: B. This is a show where the main event was almost all that mattered as it took up nearly half of the show. They have a few weeks left before Hard To Kill and this was a way to burn a week off with a great main event without much in the way of major angle advancement. Good show here, even if it was just a one off change of pace.
Heath/Rhino vs. Motor City Machine Guns went to a double DQ when the Major Players interfered
Savannah Evans b. Taya Valkyrie – Full nelson slam
Kon b. Sami Callihan – Death Valley Driver
Josh Alexander b. Mike Bailey – C4 Spike
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