I think most of you know Impact tap 4 to 6 weeks of episodes per session. But the circumstances of a live iPPV can literally change the fate of a match. A title can change hands on an iPPV, which happened yesterday at Bash at the Brewery. LAX was facing the North for the Tag Team Championships… and the North won. Which means LAX vs The Rascalz at Slammiversary is no more. Luckily, Impact reacted quickly and the match became a Triple Threat one.
This week is the final Impact before Slammiversary XVII. On the menu, The Rascalz will square off to determine who will compete against LAX on PPV. Johnny Impact and his acolyte John E. Bravo will face off The Mack and Rich Swann. TJP and Ace Austin will compete a second time. Madison Rayne and Kiera Hogan will also be in the ring. We’ll also hear from Moose
Of course, I’ll review this episode, but I will use it as a platform to preview the PPV and give you my predictions. No worries, the Nutcracking spirit you love so much is not ready to mute or stop. 
So no more words, let’s get ready for some action, but your French Nygma Steph way, of course…

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SogHNjVeE0k]

The Nygma’s Chart of the Week

Impact aired several long video packages highlighting the buildup for feuds leading into ‘Slammiversary’, I won’t comment them here. 

  • TJP defeated Ace Austin.
  • Backstage, Johnny Impact and John E. Bravo told Melissa Santos they’re Team Unity, standing together like the Mega Powers. They called themselves Team Johnny.
  • Madison Rayne vs. Kiera Hogan defeated Madison Rayne, despite Jordynne Grace being at the announce table and distracting Hogan. Post-match, Grace stepped into the ring to confront Hogan, only for Hogan to escape the ring and laugh at her for thinking she had a chance to hit her.

  • Gama Singh was giving his boys a celebration toast before their match tonight. With their backs turned, The Deaners sneaked in to put beer into the teapot. All three men spit out the first sip that hit their mouths. After they left, Rohit came back to finish his cup off without Gama knowing.
  • Father James Mitchell was trying to calm Jessicka Havok and Su Yung down from their altercation last week. Mitchell said that he needs both women to be understanding and that Rosemary is to blame for the interruption in their dark world. He finished up their discussion by saying that the goal at the Monster’s Ball this weekend is to take out Rosemary.
  • Rohit Raju w/ Raj Singh and Gama Singh defeated Laredo Kid, despite being drunk. Laredo and Raju broke the ring’s bottom rope completely off and they had to finish the match without it. As always, Gama Singh distracted the referee but Laredo Kid kicked him off the apron.

  • Moose came to the ring to talk about his match against Rob Van Dam on Sunday. Moose began his speech by talking about when he was a little kid and how he watched the legends of ECW. Though he credited the great matches that Van Dam had in ECW, he reminded him that, that was 20 years ago and things change. Moose said that he is Mr. Impact Wrestling and Van Dam is not “The Whole F’n Show” anymore. After comparing their personal lives and careers, he showed a clip of him with an unconscious Sabu, asking if he has Van Dam’s attention now. Van Dam made his way to the ring and started attacking Moose. Security came out to separate both men to opposite sides of the ring.
  • Dez & Wentz defeated Trey, who will not compete at Slammiversary.
  • Tessa Blanchard showed up and got out of the car with a baseball bat. She looked pissed over how things went down last week.

  • Killer Kross was in the church that Eddie Edwards was in last week. Kross gave a sermon about Edwards (since the old Edwards is now dead and a new form of himself has emerged) being a lonely man now and that he will pay for his sins on Sunday. He also drank blood from a chalice and grinned maniacally.
  • Rich Swann & Willie Mack defeated Johnny Impact & John E. Bravo
  • Sami Callihan and Jake Crist were having some food and drinks talking about celebrating Callihan’s victory early since he knows he’ll be winning the match on Sunday. Jake wondered what’s taking Dave so long. Sami explained he told Dave to go put on a movie (The Little Mermaid) in the basement for Fulton. Suddenly, Dave went flying across the screen and over their food. Tessa was standing in the doorway with a baseball bat. Blanchard attacked both men. Callihan then begged for her to stop. Sami managed to get the bat off her, and they brawled. She picked up a broken bottle and threatens to smash him with it, but Jake grabbed her from behind and held her arms back. Sami told her they could have made history, he would have made her famous, but she had to ruin it. Tessa broke free by hitting a reverse NutCracker on Jake, grabbed the baseball bat and clocked Callihan right in the face with it. The show ended with Tessa looking down on Sami.

The Nygma’s Nutcracker(s) and Awards of the Week

– 5 good matches
There was some good action this week. TJP and Ace Austin offered a real match, not a 2-minute one like last week and it was great. Madison and Kiera one was interesting, I love when generations collide. Rohit Raju was lucky and helped, but the match looked better than usual, probably because of Laredo Kid. The Rascalz offered some unique spots, with lots of interesting moves. Despite John E. Bravo, the match was good because of the other wrestlers, the chemistry between Mack, Swann and Impact is great to watch. For me, that made it. Action, ok. Cinematic moments, more than ok. How couldn’t I be happy?

– Amen, Killer
We are gathered here today, collectively, to analyze the parable of a man who lost everything. Interestingly enough, the ending to this story has yet been written. This man was abandoned and betrayed by all his friends and loved ones. And by his own hand, this man is truly in a place of isolation. The total abandonment of God and love itself. The ultimate salvation for any man is to die for his sins. At Slammiversary, that individual will be granted that opportunity. Ladies & Gentleman, you may now stand and kneel to Kross, as I am the only true salvation.
Just one word, awesome… And Killer, I preach for your parish when you want…

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=McwWZZzrhIg]

– The Indian Philosopher’s Song
It seems like beer is making The Desi Hit Squad be better in a ring. The Monty Python fan I am can’t help but tell Rohit & Co, “I drink, therefore I am”. Not related to Indian philosophy but working so well here… True, Bruce?

– Don’t leave a baseball bat to Tessa Blanchard…
Girls definitely know how to have fun… See you tomorrow, Sami…

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FKNHGXMZ5NI]

Impact Slammiversary Preview, Stakes and Predictions

Slammiversary card is a very unique one, the build-up was tremendous. The attention that was given to women has been essential, the desire to do hardcore and intergender wrestling brings some spice to a recipe that has worked pretty well for the moment. The fact The North won the Tag Team Championships change the game, but probably a better way.
Quite strangely, despite these kind words, I can’t help but think this card is a do-or-die one. If it works, it will be the PPV of the decade. If not, Impact Wrestling could start to think about new ways of rebuilding, again, and to roam to gain some viewership. This card is unique because it’s a dangerous one. The stipulations make it dangerous and the heavy risk of interferences.
I will say it again and again, but I genuinely want a PPV like Impact Wrestling can do, with good, great and awesome matches. What I absolutely don’t want is to tell you, tomorrow night, “I told you” or “I saw it coming”. Let’s scrutinize this card and see what may happen…

* TJP X-Division Open Challenge

TJP made his debut 2 weeks ago, he only squared off against Ace Austin and he goes straight to the PPV with an open challenge. The possible contenders are numerous. I think Petey Williams, Ace Austin, Jake Crist, The Mack, Trey, Rohit Raju or Laredo Kid. Why not a new addition? Due to the fact this match is a last-minute one, don’t expect some “larger than life”…
The Nygma’s Crystal Ball says… TJP, just to show how “good” he is

* Singles Match: RVD vs Moose

I definitely agree with Moose, ECW is the past. I’m used to saying, moving forward. Sabu, Rob Van Dam and The Sandman are less than moving forward. The fact is Moose is never better than during a PPV. He brings his A-game at every PPV. I wish Impact could focus on its current roster instead of focusing on memories because you can’t go on being what you have been. We’re not in the 90s anymore, sorry…
The Nygma’s Crystal Ball says… Moose

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e1vZvbwpyhg]

* First Blood Match: Killer Kross vs. Eddie Edwards

This storyline is huge. The characters are huge. The matches were huge. Killer Kross may have killed Kenny but he woke up a Stromboli out of Eddie Edwards. He was hardcore, he is a cannibal now. Killer Kross meanwhile remains the same, evil, nasty, vicious. And that works. The main question about this match is if Mrs AIP, Alisha, will be involved. But whatever, call a priest, I’m sure we’ll need some exorcism tomorrow night.
The Nygma’s Crystal Ball says… Eddie Edwards

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L_A-YAKBW_c]

Equal Intergender Match: Sami Callihan vs. Tessa Blanchard

Again, this storyline is huge, the characters are huge. Intergender wrestling is not for everyone, I acknowledge that, but the way Sami and Tessa have been building it up is just brilliant. Tessa has wrestled a bunch of men before, I’m not sure for Sami and women. But what would Sami Callihan not do in the Impact Zone? He’s THE Draw. The key of the match relies on oVe, this is a one on one match and it should remain as. They can really tear the house down together and I think they will because both have this real respect for the fans and the business.
The Nygma’s Crystal Ball says… Tessa Blanchard

X-Division Championship Match: Rich Swann vs. Johnny Impact

Rich Swann had been a pretty good X-Division Champion since he won the belt at Rebellion. He really defended it with honour and pride. But Johnny Impact chose not to ask for a rematch against Cage, but to focus on X-Division. Johnny won this chance at United We Stand in an Ultimate X match. Ever since his ego and John E. Bravo have become his worst enemies. If predicting a winner is difficult, at least you know these two names are synonymous with a great match.
The Nygma’s Crystal Ball says… Rich Swann 

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E1DliCg3yz4]

* Four-Way Monster’s Ball Match for the Impact Knockouts Championship match: Taya Valkyrie (c) vs. Havok vs. Su Yung vs. Rosemary

If Taya Valkyrie never visited The Undead Realm, she will have a glimpse of it at Slammiversary. Havok, Rosemary and Su Yung are 3 very serious contenders. If Taya already experimented street fight, the Monster’s Ball is definitely not the same thing. In a world of tables, chairs, barbed wire, thumbtacks, and every possible weapon, she will try something that in fact she highlighted in Lucha Underground. With so many guests and a host as sinister as Father James Mitchell can be, the odds are really against Taya…
The Nygma’s Crystal Ball says… Rosemary

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dJA9koKBDPo]

* Triple Threat Match for the Impact World Tag Team Championship Match: The North (Josh Alexander & Ethan Page) vs. LAX (Ortiz & Santana) vs. The Rascalz (Dez & Wentz)

Here we have 3 very different teams. The North is technical when LAX is high-flyers and The Rascalz are innovative. Impact changed the game and, honestly, I don’t know what to think. The Rascalz are their worst enemies, The North is extremely focused and LAX has a revenge to take. No, definitely, I can’t…
The Nygma’s Crystal Ball says… The North

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EA6vPqTgazo]

Impact World Championship Match: Brian Cage (c) vs. Michael Elgin

Brian Cage was injured at Rebellion and has not been able to defend his title since. Meanwhile, Michael Elgin was on a mission, destroying everyone, including Cage again, as he did yesterday night (see below). Just for that, Cage has to remain Champion. And I hope Don Callis and Moose will prevent us from having a new Champion tomorrow. Because I won’t be there to support him…
The Nygma’s Crystal Ball says… Brian Cage retains but don’t win.

To be eNYGMAtic…

I think I already told you so much I think there’s no need to tell you more. Don’t miss Slammiversary review on Monday night. Impact Wrestling will tap some new episodes soon, so who knows what’s going to happen next week? For sure, you saw, like me, that Jordynne and Kiera’s feud is not over, Havok and Yung have difficulties to be on the same Undead vibe, and Trey was not really happy not to go to Slammiversary
If you haven’t had the chance to watch it, Impact put on its YouTube channel a very cool documentary on LAX as they were about to main event Rebellion here. Tessa Blanchard is also featured in a nice documentary put online today, she talks about her path and doing intergender wrestling here. And also watch the video below, they called it “The STUNNING Cold Open to Slammiversary“. It will remind you why Slammiversary has been so important in TNA/Impact Wrestling history.
Just one more thing, over the last few weeks, despite some serious health issues, that are not healed yet, I had the chance to talk to some wrestlers, but not to share the chats with you. I ask you to accept my apologies, some things are sometimes a little bit more important, like taking care of oneself. I always welcome your messages and comments on @FrenchNygma.
On this very “Beam me up, Impact” note, until tomorrow night, until next week, never EVER forget to stay #eNYGMAtic…

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DyoVjpNI2ZQ]

All pics, videos, and screenshots courtesy of Impact Wrestling and Basil Mahmud. Photomontage by @frenchnygma exclusively for @steelchairmag.

By Steph Franchomme

News, Reviews, Social Media Editor, Impact Wrestling Reviewer, Interviewer Well, call me The Boss... And French...

Leave a Reply