Impact Wrestling Results: Winners, Grades, Reaction and Highlights from August 25
The Knockouts World Tag Team Championships were on the line Thursday night on Impact Wrestling as VXT's Deonna Purrazzo and Chelsea Green defended against Mia Yim and Knockouts world champion Jordynne Grace.
Would Grace and Yim be able to coexist just two weeks after they clashed for the top prize in the company's women's division and acquire more gold or would Green and Purrazzo build on their recent momentum with another signature victory?
Find out with this recap of an August 25 episode that also featured The Motor City Machine Guns and Kushida battling Violent By Design in a major six-man tag team main event.
Knockouts World Tag Team Championship Match: VXT vs. Mia Yim and Jordynne Grace
Impact wasted little time Thursday, kicking off with the blockbuster championship clash between Knockouts tag team champions VXT (Chelsea Green and Deonna Purrazzo) and the tandem of Mia Yim and Knockouts world champion Jordynne Grace.
The champions put their opponents on the defensive, isolating Yim from her partner and working her over in their corner. Miscalculations by Purrazzo and Green allowed Yim to create separation and tag Grace into the match.
The powerhouse of the Knockouts division sparked a comeback, but Green cut Yim off during a tope suicida attempt and then hung Grace up on the ropes, allowing her to join The Virtuosa in the ring to hit The Pendulum for the win.
Right when <a href="https://twitter.com/JordynneGrace?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@JordynneGrace</a> and <a href="https://twitter.com/MiaYim?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@MiaYim</a> were picking up some steam <a href="https://twitter.com/ImChelseaGreen?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@ImChelseaGreen</a> stopped the momentum! <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/IMPACTonAXSTV?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#IMPACTonAXSTV</a> <a href="https://t.co/pOzAlgfloA">pic.twitter.com/pOzAlgfloA</a>
This was a solid opening to the show, with great teamwork by the champions and some solid offense from Grace and Yim. The commentary team did a fine job of creating tension between the challengers, but Yim and Grace did not necessarily back that up with anything they did during the match.
That issue aside, this was a strong showcase for the Knockouts division and one that put over Green and Purrazzo as dominant champions. Yim and Grace will bounce back quickly and without any damage to their credibility, making this an effective segment.
Purrazzo and Green defeated Yim and Grace to retain the Knockouts Tag Team Championships
- Commentator Tom Hannifan planted seeds supporting the idea that Yim and Grace may still not be on the same page, citing the fact that Yim never had a chance to accept her partner's show of respect back at Emergence, thanks to an interruption by Masha Slamovich.
- Dueling chants for Grace and Green highlighted how over the competitors are with the Impact faithful.
- The production team either did a great job of disguising an ugly miss by Yim on the tope suicida spot or a terrible job of capturing Green cutting her off.
Mike Bennett vs. Karl Anderson
The battle between Honor No More and Bullet Club continued this week with Impact world tag team and NEVER openweight champion Karl Anderson battling Mike Bennett.
A loss for Bennett would banish his wife, Maria Kanellis, from ringside when he and Matt Taven challenge for the tag titles against The Good Brothers.
Bennett overcame an early onslaught by Machine Gun before grounding him and working him over with a rear chin lock. Anderson fought back, chopping his way out of the grasp of his opponent.
The action was back-and-forth down the stretch before Anderson delivered Gun Stun for the pinfall victory, ensuring Kanellis will not be involved in the upcoming tag team title match.
NICE TRY <a href="https://twitter.com/MariaLKanellis?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@MariaLKanellis</a>!<br><br>The Gun Stun CONNECTS!<a href="https://twitter.com/MachineGunKA?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@MachineGunKA</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/IMPACTonAXSTV?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#IMPACTonAXSTV</a> <a href="https://t.co/C1PTkV5tc6">pic.twitter.com/C1PTkV5tc6</a>
This was the first singles showdown ever between Anderson and Bennett, which seems almost impossible considering their long history of working together, against each other in tag matches and across the independent scene.
With that said, this was a really solid match between two grizzled veterans. Bennett, in particular, looked great and should be considered for a singles run with the company. He has always been an underrated in-ring worker, and an opportunity to showcase his skills in a singles match like this was long overdue.
Removing Kanellis from ringside for the upcoming title match might be the right call, especially if the plan is for Bennett and Taven to take the titles. A relatively clean win enhances them in the eyes of the Impact fans and starts their run at the top of the tag division on the right foot.
Anderson defeated Bennett
- Hannifan and Matthew Rehwoldt laid out the history between Anderson, Bennet and Kanellis in a nice moment that added gravity to the match.
- Bennett ran the ropes repeatedly, stopped in front of a seated Anderson and delivered a devastating...thumb to the eye.
.<a href="https://twitter.com/RealMikeBennett?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@RealMikeBennett</a> with a thumb TO THE EYE!<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/IMPACTonAXSTV?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#IMPACTonAXSTV</a> <a href="https://t.co/GKpQ72IcEZ">pic.twitter.com/GKpQ72IcEZ</a>
- After the match, Scott D'Amore informed the celebrating Good Brothers that they will defend their titles against Bennett and Taven next week.
Jason Hotch vs. Bhupinder Gujjar
Digital Media champion Brian Myers joined Hannifan and Rehwoldt at ringside as his rival, Bhupinder Gujjar, battled newcomer Jason Hotch in singles action.
Hotch appeared to have Gujjar where he wanted him late in the match, but an ill-fated somersault into the ring landed him in the waiting arms of his opponent, who delivered a spinebuster that drove him into the mat.
Gujjar added a spear from the middle rope for the win.
After the match, Myers entered the ring and attacked the victor with the microphone and drove him into the mat.
Gujjar continued to show the talent necessary to be one of the stars of Impact's future. He's surprisingly smooth at this point in his career, and this match, against another young star in Hotch, was a solid enhancement one.
The post-match, with Gujjar withstanding an attack by Myers and benefitting from the assistance of Scott Armstrong, was good old sports entertainment that furthered the feud over the Digital Media title. Given that is what this segment clearly set out to do, it is difficult to grade it anything but a very average "C."
Gujjar defeated Hotch
- Before the match, Killer Kelly sent a message to Tasha Steelz in a backstage vignette, briefly applying the Killer Clutch and proving just how quickly she can put the Boricua Badass down.
- Backstage, Deonna Purrazzo caught up with Gail Kim and expressed her desire for a match with Jordynne Grace for the Knockouts World Championship since she beat her earlier in the night. The Hall of Famer responded by booking The Virtuosa against Masha Slamovich next week, with the winner to challenge for the gold next.
- Also backstage, Gujjar told Armstrong that if Myers wants his title back, he can come get it himself.
Vincent vs. Josh Alexander
Impact world champion Josh Alexander will defend against Honor No More's Eddie Edwards at Bound For Glory, but The Walking Weapon battled another one of the Ring of Honor exports Thursday night as he squared off with Vincent.
A good, competitive match saw the enigmatic heel come close to knocking off Alexander, especially when he delivered Redrum. Alexander, ever the resilient champion, fought his way back into the match and delivered the C-4 Spike for the win.
After the match, Edwards interrupted the victor's celebration, telling Alexander he has stood up to Impact Wrestling and asking him which side he will choose. "We can go to battle at Bound For Glory, yet we can stand together in this war!" he exclaimed.
Before he could finish his rambling promo, Heath slid into the ring and delivered the Wake Up Call to Edwards, his latest attack in his vendetta against Honor No More.
The #1 Contender <a href="https://twitter.com/TheEddieEdwards?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@TheEddieEdwards</a> had words for <a href="https://twitter.com/Walking_Weapon?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@Walking_Weapon</a>! ....and <a href="https://twitter.com/HEATHXXII?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@HEATHXXII</a> strikes YET AGAIN!<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/IMPACTonAXSTV?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#IMPACTonAXSTV</a> <a href="https://t.co/ukrNAuX0GF">pic.twitter.com/ukrNAuX0GF</a>
The match itself was fine for what it was, even if somewhat unspectacular. Vincent is a solid wrestler with an even larger personality. He has yet to be properly presented to the Impact faithful in a way that maximizes his potential.
Edwards' promo was poorly conceived in that there is absolutely no reason to believe Alexander would ever turn against Impact and join Honor No More. He is not a Ring of Honor export, nor does he hate the company he champions. It made little sense and mercifully ended with the latest attack by Heath.
Alexander pinned Vincent
- Heath randomly popping up and laying out Honor No More guys is going to get him over more than any team with Rhino or series of matches ever would have. This has been great use of him. Hopefully, there is an endgame.
- Backstage, Sami Callihan interrupted an arguing Moose and Steve Maclin and engaged them in a brawl. It ended with him and Maclin bloodied but only Callahan lying in a heap outside the arena.
Jessicka Makes Her In-Ring Debut
The artist formerly known as Havok made her return Thursday night as Jessicka, battling Alisha Edwards in singles competition.
Edwards put up a competitive fight, as she typically does whenever she gets ring time on Impact Wrestling, but she ultimately fell to the Rikishi Driver as Jessicka earned her first win under this new persona.
This was a fine introduction to a performer Impact fans are familiar with but whose new personality is somewhat of a mystery.
She is more fun-loving, incorporates a catchphrase of "sick" and seemingly has the crowd invested early. Whether it remains that way is the question.
Jessicka defeated Edwards
- After the match, a video package aired recounting Mickie James' tumultuous last handful of months and promised an announcement by the all-timer next week.
- Sami Callihan emerged from out of nowhere and, back in the arena, issued a challenge to Moose and Maclin for Victory Road: the violent battle known as Barbed Wire Massacre.
Violent By Design vs. Time Machine
Violent By Design's Eric Young, Deaner and Joe Doering battled Time Machine's Alex Shelley, Chris Sabin and Kushida in six-man tag team action to close this week's show.
The heels seized control of the match entering the final commercial break of the night, downing Sabin and working over the former world champion in their corner of the ring. A tag to Kushida turned the tide in the babyfaces' favor.
Time Machine wiped out the heels at ringside but Young and Co. recovered, the leader of VBD delivering a top-rope elbow drop on Sabin.
The master of the Cradle Shock fought out of a piledriver attempt and made the much-needed tag. Shelley and Kushida unloaded with tandem offense and Sabin joined in later and delivered his trademark finisher to Deaner for the win.
This was a great tag team main event, with Sabin, Kushida and Shelley gelling perfectly. Their timing was impeccable, their offense dazzling and the crowd's love for them undeniable. They meshed well with the more punishing, physical style of their opponents and the result was the best match on the show and the debut of a trio that fans will champ at the bit to see again.
Time Machine defeated Violent By Design
- Rehwoldt labeled Young "The Designer." Whether on purpose or not, that is a killer nickname and one Impact should think about trademarking.
- Deaner ate the pinfall, which plays into the storyline in which he is eager, overzealous even, to prove his worth to Young.