Right here, right now. Happy Day 296 of the year 2021. The “Forbidden Door” is still wide-open. Our World Champion is still not completely ours and our World is about to change, again. This time, if the card features NWA, NJPW, AAA and AEW talents, the IMPACT roster has the upper hand. It’s time to bring all the belts back home, showcase the absolute magic this roster is capable to make, remind the world Impact Wrestling don’t need a Forbidden Door to be successful. Despite the talents coming and going from every company I quoted earlier, the show has been going on. We can say the card was respecting the recipe we love, X-Division, Knockouts, sadly no hardcore… Four Championship matches will be defended against a non-IMPACT wrestler.
So, that was the major question: is it time to close the door? Because all the pieces were ready on the game table, could we play like we know how to? Can the IMPACT wrestlers reverse the odds, take control of the Impact Zone back? All Championships were on the line yesterday, a few questions marks were on the menu, but less than usual… Who are the survivors and the winners of that great night, from Las Vegas, in a crowded arena? How many “I told you” and “I saw it coming”?  It’s time to find out, but your French Nygma way…

Former and current TNA/Impact Wrestling Knockouts Christy Hemme, Mickie James, Gail Kim, Madison Rayne, Rachael Ellering, Deonna Purrazzo talked ahead of Awesome Kong’s induction into the TNA/Impact Wrestling Hall of Fame. After a moving induction speech, Impact Wrestling Hall of Famer Gail Kim introduced Kia Stevens, better known as the former 2-time TNA Knockouts Champion and former Knockouts Tag Team Champion, Awesome Kong.

She delivered a heartfelt speech, thanking Impact Wrestling and the fans who have made sure the company would continue to exist. She said that her feud with Gail Kim was probably the reason why she was inducted today. She thanked Scott D’Amore and Dutch Mantel for creating a Knockouts class in the Hall of Fame as they were the agents of most of the Knockouts matches at that time and made sure women had all the time they deserved in the ring.
Kong thanked her husband, Lexie Fyfe and reminded us of her SHIMMER time and talked to all the people in attendance and watching at home who have a dream. “Believe in yourself, and if you have a dream, pursue it, go do it and don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t,” she said. All the Knockouts, Raisha Saeed and Gail Kim joined her on the ramp.

Jordynne Grace defeated Madison Rayne, Fallah Bahh, John Skyler, Crazzy Steve and Chelsea Green to become the inaugural Digital Media Champion. A nice but short match as the countdown was around 7 minutes when the bell rang. I really appreciated the fact every woman played the game of intergender wrestling. We know Chelsea Green and Jordynne Grace have no problem with that, but seeing Madison Rayne doing it was really appreciated. The Digital Media belt is meant to be defended and held by men or women indifferently.

Skyler posed in the middle of the ring to start and was promptly beaten down by everyone else. Bahh cleared the ring save for Grace, who actually dropped him with a running shoulder. Grace hit a running Vader Bomb on Green Grace two but Skyler ran her over. Green knocked Skyler off the top, followed by Rayne hitting a tornado DDT on Steve. Green double-stomped Rayne but Grace loaded Green up in a MuscleBuster. While still holding Green on her shoulder, Grace clotheslined Rayne and then planted Green. Grace piled up a bunch of people in the corner, but Bahh threw her in as well for the big running splash. Skyler caught Steve with a super Regal Roll, Green made the. Grace picked Skyler up for the Grace Driver for the win. Rachael Ellering came to celebrate with her teammate.

  • IMPACT Knockouts Tag Team Championship Match: Decay (c) vs The IInspiration 

If the IInspiration released this song and its sultry video a few days ago on social networks, no one was expecting they would make an iconic entrance with it. That was, in fact, saying a lot about the fate of the match, due to the importance that was given by the company on The Iinspiration’s debut. Rosemary and Havok clearly dominated the match but Cassie and Jessica used these tiny moments when the referee was not paying attention to give themselves the necessary momentum to win.

Rosemary scared McKay into the corner to start, so Rosemary side-slammed Lee instead. Havok came in to scream and hammer away, setting up the Tarantula from Rosemary. That was enough for Lee to grab a suplex and McKay grabbed a quickly broken chinlock. They took each other down by the hair and it was back to Havok to crush the IInspiration in the corner. Lee managed to send Havok outside though and it was McKay coming back in to take over. Havok hit a bulldog onto McKay’s knee, then Rosemary was back with a Scorpion Death Drop. Havok missed a leg drop and got sent into the post. That just made her scream, so she got sent in again, followed by another posting. Rosemary made the save but got sent into McKay’s knee. A sit-out powerbomb/neckbreaker combination was enough to give McKay the win for her team.

Backstage, Impact Knockouts Champion Deonna Purrazzo told Gia Miller it’s been Mickie James who has been jumping her, and when they bring the fight to her, she got punished. The Drama King is banned from ringside for tonight’s match.

  • Triple-Threat Match for the vacant X-Division Championship: Steve Maclin vs El Phantasmo (NJPW) vs Trey Miguel

The powerhouse Maclin versus 2 hybrid high-flying talents, Trey Miguel and El Phantasmo, on paper the match was absolutely appealing. We could expect some fast-paced action, the enigma of the match was Steve Maclin who could easily slow the match down. They all started going in a hurry with Phantasmo dropkicking Maclin to the floor. Miguel added a kick to the face but Phantasmo broke up a slingshot dive. Back in, Maclin got punched into the corner, leaving Miguel to take Phantasmo down into a leglock. Maclin made the save and Miguel was sent outside, leaving Phantasmo to walk along the top rope into a hurricanrana to drop Maclin again.

Phantasmo raked both of their backs but Miguel was back in. The comeback let Maclin knock both of them down again before putting Miguel and Phantasmo in the Tree of Woe. A running shoulder to the ribs hit Phantasmo but Miguel slipped away. Maclin hits a Spear to send a handspringing Miguel through the ropes and out to the floor. Maclin wasn’t done yet and hit big running dives onto both of them for more crashes. Phantasmo was up first though with a kick to Maclin’s head to knock him outside, setting up a Lionsault. Miguel took Phantasmo down though and sent Maclin back inside. Maclin caught a charging Miguel in something close to an AA, with Phantasmo making the save.

Phantasmo wasn’t done and hit a sunset bomb on Maclin off the top. A super hurricanrana sent Miguel crashing onto Maclin, setting up a top rope splash for two. The fired-up Maclin blocked Miguel’s top rope Meteora, only to get kicked in the head. Phantasmo tried to NutPunch Miguel but he hurt his own hand because Miguel was wearing a cup (the Man with the Iron Nuts… sorry). A brainbuster and the top rope Meteora gave Miguel the win and the title.
He deserved it, really. The match was great but, this time, for me, didn’t have the flavour of a Match of The Night. Trey has waited a long time to win that title he had chased again and again, as a Rascalz and on his own. His tears were nothing but real. And he had every right to shed them.

Backstage, Mickie James told Gia Miller Deonna might be one of the best in the world right now, but she has made things personal. She didn’t appreciate Purrazzo showing up at her home. James says tonight is a huge deal because she wants to show she’s still worthy of being Champion.

  • VBD vs Heath & Rhino??

Bound For Glory 2020, Heath was about to sign a contract with Impact Wrestling, he was in the Call Your Shot Gauntlet Match, he has his friend Rhino’s back. And the injury happened. One year later, after 5 surgeries, Heath is back, without his friend, ready not only to become a member of the IMPACT roster but to wrestle Violent By Design. Rhino was still hesitating on Thursday, was he tonight? Heath was on his own to start but hoped that Rhino would join him. Joe Doering and Deaner were representing the team here, with Eric Young in their corner. There was no Rhino to start so Heath got double-teamed, which he said he would accept if Rhino didn’t show up.

The bell rang and Heath hammered away in the corner but a Doering distraction let Deaner get in a cheap shot. The beatdown was on in the corner as the baddies started taking turns. Doering grabbed the neck crank, setting up a running crossbody on Heath. Deaner came back in so Heath fought back until a double clothesline put them both down. That brought out Rhino, who took the tag from Heath so he can clean the house and hit The Gore on Deaner for the win.
Less than 5 minutes is not a lot to end such a storyline because it is not supposed to end tonight. The most important tonight was to reunite the friends. With Heath and Eric Young injured, things were not complete. Heath is back, Rhino is back on track, and Eric Young should be back soon. Because I want a long match and I wanted Violent By Design…

Backstage, IMPACT Digital Media Championship Jordynne Grace told Gia Miller she’s happy to make history being the first Digital Media Champion and the Triple Crown Knockout Champion. She then pumped up Rachel Ellering for her upcoming Call Your Shot Gauntlet Match. Moose and W. Morrissey strolled up and Moose said he doesn’t know how she thinks she’ll win when they are in it.

  • 20-People Call Your Shot Gauntlet Match 

Order of entrances: Chris Sabin, Rocky Romero (NJPW), Madman Fulton, Rohit Raju, Tasha Steelz, Rachael Ellering, Savannah Evans, Johnny Swinger, Melina (NWA), The Demon (as in WCW’s KISS Demon), Brian Myers, Matt Cardona, Laredo Kid (AAA), Sam Beale, Rich Swann, Ace Austin, Moose, Eddie Edwards, Alisha Edwards and W. Morrissey.

What did I tell you on Thursday’s review? In the IMPACT gauntlet match, #1 is the best number. Well, in fact, it didn’t happen like that but… This match was pretty open as many feuds were putting some spice to it. If the match was good, I won’t say the opposite, we can regret the Knockouts were not as powerful as they could be. Then, if we look at the comebacks and arrivals, no Strowman, no Wyatt, sorry. Just Melina and WCW’s KISS Demon. The real surprise was Rocky Romero. One of The Good Brothers’ great friends and an NJPW wrestler turned manager. As I’m writing, he challenged Trey Miguel for the X-Division Championship, and Trey accepted, so he was not there just to say hi.

After Morrissey entered the brawl, as the twentieth and last, here is what happened. Sabin, Raju, Cardona, Swann, Austin, Moose, Eddie Edwards, Alisha Edwards and Morrissey were the final grouping. Morrissey tossed out Alisha and then kicked Eddie out, meaning it was time for the alliance with Moose. Raju wanted to join them but joined the Edwards on the floor instead. Sabin dumped Ace Austin, so here was Madman Fulton to attack Sabin, allowing Moose and Morrissey to get rid of him too. We were down to Moose, Morrissey, Cardona and Swann. Everyone took a corner.

Morrissey went to get rid of Swann but Moose dumped both of them, leaving us with Cardona vs. Moose in a regular singles match. Cardona swang away and hit the Future Endeavored, only to miss the Radio Silence. Moose hit a Spears for the win. Moose got a trophy and a shot for any Championship. He betrayed W. Morrissey but why would it be a problem to him? He has been waiting for the World Championship for so long now he would do anything to wear it around his waist. Absolutely everything. Now, when is he going to cash in his opportunity?

  • Triple-Threat Match for The Impact World Tag Team Championship: The Good Brothers (Karl Anderson & Doc Gallows) (c) vs FinJuice (NJPW) vs Bullet Club (NJPW/IMPACT)

I told you that this kind of match was benefiting the Champions. It seems like The Good Brothers were perfectly aware of that. Bey and Finlay fought over arms control to start and trade arm-drags to keep up the pace. Early standoff until Bey flipped into a dropkick to cut him off. Robinson came in to start in on Bey’s arm and hit a Swanton off of Bey’s shoulders. Gallows and Hikuleo collided with neither getting the better of things, so Gallows powered him into the corner.

Bey came in and got dragged into the Brothers’ corner, but some rapid-fire tags left us with Hikuleo sending Finlay into the vacant corner. Hikuleo hit a delayed vertical suplex and a chinlock on Finlay. He missed a running boot in the corner. Robinson came in and started cleaning the house, including the big shot to Bey’s head. Everything broke down into a 6-way knockdown for a breather. Robinson was up first with the Cannonball to Bey and the PowerPlex connected, only to have Anderson stealing the win.
The action was good, but the match was slow and The Good Brothers cheated their win. Next match, please.

Minoru Suzuki is still coming soon.
Backstage, Christian Cage told Gia Miller he knows Josh Alexander has sacrificed a lot to get here, but Cage has too. He gave up everything to come here, worked hard to come back after a seven-year retirement. Tonight, he isn’t giving up the title without a fight.

  • Impact Knockouts Championship Match: Deonna Purrazzo (c) vs Mickie James (NWA) – Drama King banned from ringside

I won’t tell you the story again but that one was personal. So this match was meant to be brutal and have a sour smell of revenge. Mickie attacked Purrazzo outside before the bell and hit the Thesz press off the apron to hammer away. They fought up the ramp, Purrazzo took it back to the floor and kicked Mickie in the face to put her down at ringside.

Back inside, the bell rang with Mickie getting stomped down in the corner to keep her in trouble. A lot of stomping sent Mickie on the floor but she scored with an elbow to the face back inside. A kind of powerbomb got Purrazzo out of trouble and Mickie was right back down. They traded cross-bodies, double knockdown. Mickie got the better of a slug-out and hit something like a Regal Cutter. Mickie hit a top-rope Thesz press and a MickieDT, but Purrazzo got in the ropes for the save. Purrazzo sent her into the corner and grabbed the Venus de Milo/Fujiwara armbar, sending Mickie into the ropes this time.

Purrazzo hit The Queen’s Gambit piledriver but Mickie kicked out at two. Purrazzo wasn’t happy and went outside for a chair, allowing Mickie to go back up. The top-rope Thesz press hits the referee by mistake, so Mickie got in a chair shot of her own. Purrazzo caught Mickie on top with the Venus de Milo but Mickie slipped out again. This time it’s the tornado DDT to plant Purrazzo for the win and the title.
A cheat for a cheat? Was it really necessary? It was a good match, with the big end we all expected. Mickie James is still killing it (she’s 42, yes…) and she had interesting in-ring chemistry with Deonna Purrazzo. I’m not sure how long she will hold the title, but it was cool to see her win here, as she certainly still has it.

The next PPV will be “Hard To Kill” on Saturday, January 8, 2022, in Dallas, Texas. That fast??

  • Impact World Championship Match: Christian Cage (c) vs Josh Alexander

They locked up to shove each other around. Christian took him to the mat and grabbed a headlock. Alexander caught him up top and got in a big shove to the floor as things got a bit more physical. Back in, Christian had to backdrop his way out of a double underhook and they were right back on the floor. Alexander got sent into the barricade. Back in, Christian ground him down again. This time, Alexander came up with a wristlock, only to get sent into the corner.

Christian stroke away in the corner but Alexander flipped it around and hit him in the face. A release German suplex into the corner rocked Christian hard and a running big boot put him down again. Christian punched his way out of a powerbomb attempt but Alexander dropped him down for two more. Alexander went for the ankle lock but Christian kicked the leg out and put on a choke. Alexander backflipped his way to freedom and hit a middle-rope knee to the back of the head.

Christian was back up with a tornado DDT but Alexander pulled him down into a Crossface, then a Sharpshooter, but Christian grabbed the rope in a hurry. Alexander missed a moonsault and got speared down. The Killswitch was broken up so Christian snapped the back of Alexander’s neck over the top rope. Christian hit a frog splash but missed a charge into the post and got caught in the ankle lock. Alexander cranked away to keep Christian in the middle and stepped onto Christian’s hand to hold him in place. That was too much for Christian, who tapped out to make Alexander champion.

After the match, Cage handed Alexander the IMPACT World Title in a show of respect. Alexander was celebrating with his wife and son when Moose appeared in the ring and called his shot.

  • IMPACT World Championship Match: Josh Alexander (c) vs Moose

Moose immediately hit a huge Spear on Alexander and pinned him for the win.

Alexander and Christian had an awesome match here with a great story throughout, as Christian was doing his best but got reeled in by Alexander. The ending was about Christian getting trapped by a submission machine as Alexander was just the better man. Alexander also knew what Christian would be trying because he has watched Christian for so many years. This felt like a true passing of the torch, which is exactly what it should have been. UNTIL Moose cashed in his Shot, did it like Edge before, as an Ultimate Opportunist. Some will say it ruined the happy ending. I will say it opened such a land of opportunities the coming months will be very, very interesting…

I found a title for this review a month ago, I decided to keep it for this review. I was absolutely sure that Josh Alexander would become World Champion tonight, that his cash-in would be successful. But there’s always a tree to hide the rest of the forest… While Josh Alexander was making his way to the top slowly but surely, I forgot someone who, since Bound For Glory 2020, has been revolutionizing himself. Moose can really thank EC3 for what happened tonight because that inner revolution was the reason Moose has had such a fantastic 2021. He has been working for this belt for 5 years, to a point I thought he would not re-sign and chase other dreams elsewhere. Now, I’m just looking forward to seeing the revenge, Moose vs Alexander, the build-up, the mind games… And W. Morrissey’s anger.
Instead, here came “St. Anger,” that iconic Metallica song title. That inner strength that 
tonight led Mickie James, Trey Miguel, Josh Alexander, Moose to the top of Impact Wrestling. That energy that makes a whole roster turn a PPV into a masterpiece. Like an army, they invaded their zone, their ring and they showed the world all of them are fantastic wrestlers able to provide legendary matches. And, the cherry on the cake, D’Lo Brown and Matt Striker’s words were echoing the fans’ emotions. That night, we were a family, one huge entity, one heart beating at the same pace. That is wrestling, isn’t it?
Bound For Glory was 3 great hours of wrestling, no match was that bad, nothing couldn’t keep you away from the screen. There was something fantastic in the way all the matches, despite different, were matching so well, that’s the reason why I can’t choose a match of the night. Action wise, Bound For Glory was pretty flawless, we could regret that the VBD vs Heath/Rhino match was too short and The Good Brothers’ cheated win was not the right ending for a World Championship match. I think I’ve already said enough…
Right here, right now, we are closing a chapter to come back to a kind of normality, if we can call Minoru Suzuki normalcy… New challenges will appear soon, new contenders, new matches. Right here, right now. Let’s just enjoy that great PPV because we are Impact Wrestling. We know deep down in our hearts we witnessed something amazing. See you on Thursday, eNYGMAtically yours…


Bound For Glory Full Results:

  • Jordynne Grace defeated Madison Rayne, Chelsea Green, John Skyler, Fallah Bahh and Crazzy steve to become the inaugural IMPACT Digital Media Champion
  • The IInspiration (Cassie Lee & Jessica McKay) defeated Decay (Rosemary & Havok) to become the new IMPACT Knockouts Tag Team Champions
  • Trey Miguel defeated El Phantasmo and Steve Maclin to become the new IMPACT X-Division Championship.
  • Heath & Rhino defeated Violent By Design (Deaner & Joe Doering) w/ Eric Young
  • Moose won the Call Your Shot Gauntlet Match
  • The Good Brothers defeated FinJuice (Juice Robinson & David Finlay) and Bullet Club (Chris Bey & Hikuleo) to retain the new IMPACT World Tag Team Champions
  • Mickie James defeated Deonna Purrazzo to become the new IMPACT Knockouts Champion
  • Josh Alexander defeated Christian Cage to become the new IMPACT World Champion
  • Moose cashed in his Call Your Shot opportunity and defeated Josh Alexander to become the new IMPACT World Champion

All pics, screenshots, and videos courtesy of Impact Wrestling, AXS TV, Fight Network, Dan The JOBR, and Fite TV. All photocollage 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