Impact Wrestling Results: Winners, Grades, Reaction and Highlights from May 12May 13, 2022
Impact Wrestling Results: Winners, Grades, Reaction and Highlights from May 12
The road to Slammiversary continued Thursday night with a special Gauntlet for the Gold in which the top contender to Impact Wrestling world champion Josh Alexander would be determined.
Who would cash their ticket to the June 19 event and a date with The Walking Weapon?
Would Alexander secure a victory in a massive tag team match that put him alongside New Japan Pro-Wrestling's Tomohiro Ishii against Bullet Club's "Switchblade" Jay White and El Phantasmo?
Find out now with this recap of the May 12 episode.
Ultimate X Qualifier: Kenny King vs. Chris Bey
The battle between Honor No More and Bullet Club wrote another chapter in Thursday night's opening match, an Ultimate X Qualifying bout between Kenny King and Chris Bey.
A competitive start to the show saw Bey play the role of babyface, forced to fight from underneath against the onslaught of his veteran opponent. He did, too, and appeared to be on his way to scoring the win and cashing his ticket to Slammiversary when Maria Kanellis-Bennett interfered.
The distraction allowed King to score the win with the Royal Flush in a match that highlighted two of the top factions in Impact and two immensely talented workers. And how the tides have turned, with Honor No More suddenly on a roll while Bullet Club struggles in the win-loss column.
While the Ring of Honor exports needed the momentum, it would be nice if Impact could find some middle ground where neither faction has to lose consistently for stretches of time.
- "So you're telling me Kenny King is in there with a Bullet Club fanboy?" Kanellis asked condescendingly on commentary upon hearing Bey once longed to buy a Bullet Club T-shirt.
- The finish was cheap, but it protected Bey while providing Honor No More another quality win after their victory over Bullet Club last Saturday at No Surrender.
Knockouts Tag Team Title Match: The Influence vs. Alisha and Gisele Shaw
The Influence defended the Knockouts Tag Team Championship in the night's next match, as Madison Rayne and Tenille Dashwood squared off with the makeshift tandem of Gisele Shaw and Alisha.
The challengers had no real business putting up a fight against the champions but they did, pushing Rayne and Dashwood to the limit before falling just short of title glory.
It was interesting to Shaw so seamlessly fill in the role of babyface, especially given the fact that there was no emphasis for the turn. Yet here, she was great, almost to the point that it could be argued her in-ring style is better suited for that role.
She and Alisha made for entertaining challengers but the right team went over, if only to escalate the newfound rivalry and set up another match down the line.
- It was weird to see Shaw standing on the apron, clapping her hands and trying to fire up the crowd given the fact that she was just a heel two weeks ago and made the switch for no rhyme or reason.
- With that said, her hot tag offense was on-point and the crowd responded favorably.
Gail Kim's Major Announcement
Impact Hall of Famer Gail Kim announced a major history-making match for Slammiversary in Nashville, Tennessee, when she revealed the Knockouts Championship will be up for grabs in a first-ever Queen of the Mountain match.
Champion Tasha Steelz will defend against Chelsea Green, Deonna Purrazzo, Jordynne Grace and Mia Yim on June 19.
A bit of back-and-forth with Steelz gave way to a brawl involving all five combatants and Savannah Evans. The babyfaces cleared the ring and stood tall to end a segment that did exactly what it intended: to build excitement for the match.
The tease of a Steelz vs. Kim contest is mighty appealing but, for now, the idea of five world-class women's wrestlers battling to not only hoist championship gold but also etch their names in the history books is a ton of fun and something every one of the five competitors has earned.
- Kim telling Evans the PPV match is for world champions only, and the expression on the bodyguard's face, suggests it is only a matter of time before Evans betrays Steelz and chases her own title aspirations.
- The face-to-face between Kim and Steelz was a nice tease of a future match if Impact officials, and Kim herself, ever wish to explore that showdown.
- Yim's new entrance screams "star," something she was inexplicably never treated like in WWE.
Josh Alexander and Tomohiro Ishii vs. Jay White and El Phantasmo
Bullet Club's Jay White and El Phantasmo looked to turn the faction's fortunes around as they battled Tomohiro Ishii and Impact world champion Josh Alexander, two warriors fresh off a battle against each other at No Surrender.
They would not be successful, though.
Despite White and ELP controlling the majority of the bout, the double-tough babyfaces fought back into the contest before Ishii earned the victory for his team with the brainbuster.
The match was every bit as good as you would expect based on the talent involved. It was also a nice showcase of the New Japan competitors. NJPW has repeatedly worked with Impact to get its stars exposure in the United States, with FinJuice, Minoru Suzuki and Bullet Club all enjoying stints of varying lengths in recent years.
Here, Ishii scored a big win and Alexander benefited from sharing the ring with three international stars. The Stone Pitbull went over as a "thank you" for his efforts over the last couple events while the world champion enjoyed the spotlight, too.
All good stuff here.
- Matthew Rehwoldt's revelation that ELP does not believe in clipping his nails was an unintentionally hilarious bit of unnecessary information.
- Something as small as Alexander standing guard as Ishii scored the fall, preventing White from interfering, adds so much legitimacy to what the audience is watching.
Gauntlet for the Gold
- Chris Sabin (Young)
- Alex Shelley (Edwards)
- Eddie Edwards (Sabin)
- Vincent (Morrissey)
- Steve Maclin (Sabin)
- Shark Boy (Edwards)
- Raj Singh (Gujjar)
- Trey Miguel (Maclin)
- Bhupinder Gujjar (Young)
- Shera (Morrissey)
- W. Morrissey (Maclin)
- Eric Young
- Johnny Swinger (Young)
- Black Taurus (Moose)
- Heath (Moose)
- Rhino (Moose)
- Moose (Sami Callihan; not officially entered)
- Rich Swann (Rehwoldt)
- Matthew Rehwoldt (PCO)
- PCO (Maclin)
Violent By Design's master manipulator Eric Young will challenge Josh Alexander for the Impact world title after surviving a grueling Gauntlet For The Gold on Thursday.
The main event was a fun Battle Royal that played up several ongoing stories, highlighted top stars like Moose, Steve Maclin and W. Morrissey, and featured two longtime Impact stars and former world champions Young and Chris Sabin vying for the all-important championship opportunity.
There were fun spots along the way, including Young's piledriver on Morrissey that had some fearing injury for the big man, and one of the great comedy entrances/eliminations in Battle Royal history courtesy of Johnny Swinger.
Young win may seem somewhat random but it's fitting that one of the great performers from Impact's two-decade history will have the opportunity to compete for the company's top prize against a star of the present and future.
Impact has invested a lot of time and energy into the development of Violent By Design, so spotlighting them on the road to Slammiversary makes sense. Whether it will be a hot enough match to persuade fans to shell out PPV money just weeks after AEW's Double or Nothing event is another question.
Luckily, Young is a great wrestler and an even better promo. He will ensure fans want to see Alexander whup his ass come June 19.
Order of Entry (Eliminated By)
- Morrissey's arrival fired up the crowd and injected new energy into the match.
- Young delivered a wicked piledriver on Morrissey that led to several referees checking on the big man. He would depart the match without being eliminated.
- Swinger entering in a mini-ring, even smaller than the ones wrestlers rode at WrestleMania III and VI, was brilliant.
- Swinger's elimination seconds later, a la Bushwacker Luke, was even better.
- Rehwoldt entered the match as Swann was distracted by Matt Cardona's music and eliminated Swann.
- Maclin smirked in the face of a wide-eyed Morrissey following his elimination.
- Sami Callihan emerged from the darkness to eliminate Moose and escalate their rivalry.