Hello Impact fans and curious rubberneckers! I’m Elle Collins, and this is the Knockout Report. I’ll fill you in on everything that happens in Impact Wrestling, but I’m always going to lead with the Knockouts Division, because they deserve it. You can follow me on Twitter here, With Spandex here, and Uproxx here. You can watch Impact Wrestling on the Pursuit Channel or Twitch every Friday night at 10 p.m. Then on Mondays, read this column and share it with everyone you know.
Last time on Impact, Scarlett Bordeaux put on a show, Killer Kross was a troll, and Sami Callihan invited Rich Swann to join oVe. Now without further ado, here’s the Knockout Report for January 18, 2019.
Jordynne Grace Defeated Allie
Jordynne still seems a little emotionally distant from this feud. She showed up to help Kiera, and she’s still around, but you never get the impression that she necessarily believes that Allie is a good person whose soul has been replaced by darkness. All Jordynne sees is an opponent worthy of conquering, and that’s enough for her. Honestly, it’s enough for me too. Jordynne gives Allie someone to fight before it’s time for the big Rosemary climax, and Allie gives Jordynne a chance to show her dominance in the ring. It’s a good match, but it’s all lead-up to what comes after.
Rosemary wants her Bunny back, but she doesn’t seem entirely informed about what she needs to do to win her. She keeps reaching out to Allie, wanting to bring her back into the Shadow, but this Allie has no interest in that. Considering Rosemary’s own powers, and her previous appearance in the Undead Realm, she surely must know about Allie’s soulless state, and may even have a plan for restoring it. Maybe what we’re seeing is the first step in that plan, where she’s making Dark Allie remember her old self and her friendship with Rosemary, leading her down the path of wanting her soul restored, before actually making that happen.
Scarlett Picks Herself
Well at least we reached some sort of resolution on this. Just when I had totally given up on anything happening, let alone Scarlett Bordeaux actually wrestling in the Knockouts Division, she announces that that’s exactly what’s happening. On the one hand, Scarlett choosing herself as the winner of her talent search does make that whole angle feel completely pointless. On the other hand, it already felt pretty pointless when it was happening, and now it’s finally over and we’re moving on to Scarlett as an in-ring competitor, which makes a lot more sense than everything they’ve been doing so far.
Tessa’s Got Murder In Her Eyes
It wouldn’t be wrestling, and certainly not Impact Wrestling, if there wasn’t an attempted murder at least once a month. This might actually count as two, since Tessa Blanchard’s got a pretty good stranglehold on that female producer before Gail Kim breaks that up only to take the brunt of it herself.
Even at the very start of the segment, when McKenzie Mitchell is interviewing Tessa, you can immediately see that Tessa’s way too worked up, and as soon as she gets a chance as the mic she’s screaming. She would have beaten up McKenzie if the terrified interviewer hadn’t made a run for it. Brian Cage also has a backstage tantrum in this episode, but whereas he just knocks people over, Tessa chokes them out. That’s a lot more dangerous, and Gail Kim looked like she was in real trouble when Tessa had that cord wrapped around her neck. This leads to Tessa Blanchard being suspended, because that’s what happens when you try to murder your boss in pro wrestling, as opposed to most jobs where you’d be fired and sent to jail. Now we can only assume that she’ll break her suspension by reappearing next week to attack a newly-returned Taya Valkyrie, and that will probably lead to another title shot. After all, this is the world of pro wrestling, where the only way to get fired is to lose a match where that’s the stipulation. Whatever happens, Tessa has new worlds to conquer, but it doesn’t look like she’s giving up on this one anytime soon.
Meanwhile, In Guyville
KM and Caleb Konley Never Stood a Chance
The idea that KM and Caleb Konley were going to have a wrestling match was only a conceit to get the show underway so that a bunch of chaos could immediately happen. First, an angry Brian Cage is rampaging through the building, attacking everyone in his path as he looks for Johnny Impact. He comes out to the ring and takes down KM, Caleb, Fallah Bahh, and referee Johnny Bravo, until Johnny Impact shows up to give him satisfaction. But then Johnny’s immediately attacked by Moose and Killer Kross.
This is an ongoing problem now: All the good guys want to do is fight each other, but the bad guys keep showing up and getting in the way. That means Cage has to fight Moose tonight, and he and Johnny have to wait to work out their own issues down the road. As pro wrestling storytelling goes, it’s serviceable.
Ethan Page Defeated Eddie Edwards by DQ
This was supposed to be a regular match between Ethan and Eddie, but Eddie just couldn’t resist the allure of Kenny the kendo stick, and he took a DQ loss for beating Page with it. That was the perfect opening for Eli Drake, who’d been on commentary, to take a mic and admonish Eddie for giving into the hardcore wrestling lifestyle. He challenged Eddie to reclaim his former identity as a legit wrestler, but it seems more likely that this leads to Eli getting beaten with a kendo stick instead.
Brian Cage Defeated Moose
Brian Cage doesn’t really care about proving himself against Moose, he just wants to get back to Johnny Impact and the title he should have won at Homecoming. Moose on the other hand would love to teach Cage a lesson, which is why he almost hits the Machine with a steal chair, even though the ref has warned him that would be a DQ. It ultimately doesn’t even matter because Cage ducks the chairshot, Moose tweaks his injured hand between the chair and the turnbuck, and Cage gets the pin.
Rich Swann Defeated Trey Miguel
This was announced as a Non-Title Match, which I suppose gave it a bit more suspense, even though it still never seemed in doubt that Rich Swann would win. With guys like him and Trey Miguel it’s not even about who wins as much as getting to watch these guys fly through the air. Miguel continues to win me over more and more, especially with the help of the Rascalz segment this week, in which he said he bought new clothes hoping to become the Homecoming King, only to learn that Impact Homecoming doesn’t even have a king.
As for Rich, he continued to be the target of oVe’s recruitment, with them coming in after this match to give him an oVe T-shirt. There’s still a bit of ambiguity here, but not enough to make me think that this angle ends with Rich Swann joining oVe, as opposed to just kicking Sami Callihan’s ass in the ring.
LAX Defeated oVe
If you’re putting on a tag team main event that doesn’t have much of a story but needs to be a strong match while all the singles guys are occupied, you could do a lot worse than LAX and oVe. As random as this face-off was, these two teams consistently put on great matches, and this was no exception. There’s no doubt who’s on top when Santana kicks out of the Crists’ tag team finisher, and then Jake Crist eats the LAX finisher and gets pinned. It’s not even contrived, LAX are just the best. The Crist brothers are great at being weasels and henchmen, not at tag team wrestling.
That’s all for this week’s Knockout Report. Join me next week, when Taya Returns, and Johnny Impact faces Killer Kross for the Impact World Championship.