IMPACT Wrestling Report: BTI, No Surrender, New Japan Pro-Wrestling
It’s been a while since my last IMPACT Wrestling Report, but that’s because I’ve been very busy doing interviews for my books about the history of TNA/IMPACT Wrestling. Some of the people I’ve interviewed in recent weeks include Gail Kim, Ken Shamrock, Earl Hebner, and Jeff Hardy, who is the most popular wrestler in IMPACT Wrestling history and, currently, one of the top guys in WWE. Make sure to sign up for email alerts on my site so you don’t miss out on any future book updates because there are many more to come.
This past week was a big one in IMPACT Wrestling. The company announced a new TV show, which premieres tomorrow night, No Surrender aired on Saturday, and a partnership was revealed with New Japan Pro-Wrestling (NJPW). Let’s dive in!
BEFORE THE IMPACT
Last week, IMPACT Wrestling announced a new weekly TV show on AXS TV, Before The IMPACT! This new one-hour weekly TV show premieres tomorrow, February 16, at 7 p.m. ET, as a lead-in to IMPACT Wrestling on AXS TV. Read my post here for all of the details regarding this exciting new show.
The latest IMPACT Plus exclusive event, No Surrender, took place this last Saturday, and the focal point of the event was that Tommy Dreamer, on his 50th birthday, was being given a shot at the IMPACT World Championship. It was a great, emotional narrative that was expertly told by the masterful storytelling of IMPACT Wrestling’s creative team — one that had many fans, including myself, rooting for Tommy. Many of us grew up watching Tommy putting his heart and soul on the line, night after night, and we wanted to see him go the distance and get the recognition he deserves.
Among the highlights of the night was Brian Myers & Hernandez defeating Matt Cardona & Eddie Edwards. This hard-hitting tag team match pitted two real-life friends against one another — Cardona and Myers — showcasing their talent alongside two IMPACT Wrestling icons. It was a fun and entertaining bout that showed how Matt Cardona has plenty to offer the fans, and the talent, in IMPACT Wrestling, and how he’s only just begun to give us a taste of what he’s got.
Going into No Surrender, one of the matches that had a ton of buzz was the Triple Threat Revolver match. And in case you didn’t read it, I interviewed IMPACT Wrestling referee Daniel Spencer for my book project and asked him for his thoughts on this match, and more. You can read his thoughts here.
So, did this one-of-a-kind match live up to the hype? Absolutely! The fact that IMPACT Wrestling is constantly innovating and trying new, bold things is a testament to why it always feels so fresh. The talent in this match was top-tier and while Josh Alexander walked away with the final victory, everyone involved deserves credit for putting on one hell of a show. It is definitely one of the reasons you should go back and watch No Surrender!
Seeing Matt Hardy back at an IMPACT Wrestling PPV was surreal. But this time he brought AEW’s Private Party with him, for what was an epic triple threat tag team championship match with The Good Brothers and Beer Guns (Chris Sabin & James Storm). All three teams put on a great display of athleticism and prowess — and Matt Hardy even got in the ring at one point to deliver his signature move — but, in the end, The Good Brothers walked away with the gold, proving why they are the champs.
The main event that we all waited for, where Tommy Dreamer got his IMPACT World Title shot against Rich Swann, delivered. Both guys gave it their all, and Tommy even had to pop a finger back into place during this bout — after having it examined by IMPACT Wrestling medical expert extraordinaire, Dr. Ross, of course. Both wrestlers had the opportunity to shine in this match, displaying why they are both worthy warriors, but Rich Swann came out on top. Tommy showed that — even at 50 years old — he can hang with the top guy in the company, while Rich demonstrated why he is, in fact, the champ. The post-match mutual respect was cut short by Moose, who demolished both guys, making it clear that he’s coming for Rich Swann’s title.
Before No Surrender went off the air a surprise announcement was made: NJPW’s Juice Robinson and David Finlay are coming to IMPACT Wrestling! They are going to be on tomorrow night’s IMPACT on AXS TV, so make sure to tune into what promises to be an amazing show.