Photo Credits – Impact, WWE and Jokereruri
No promotion besides maybe the NWA, have dealt with the constant pronouncements that the brand is dead or close to death like Impact. All the cards on the table, I felt that way for a long time with all the mismanagement odd booking decisions, network cancellations and talent departures but the promotion is like the zombie promotion that refuses to die, and you got to respect that will to compete. So, starting the year with a PPV named Hard to Kill couldn’t be more appropriate to describe Impact.
Let’s start by talking about the great pickup with Impact hiring Tom Hannifan (formerly Tom Philips in WWE) as their new lead announcer. Tom in my opinion was the best announcer WWE had in the company when he was released, and Impact smartly picked him up. I loved that he paid respect to every person that held that position in the almost 20-year history by publicly naming everyone from Tenay to Striker. I have to say for the first time working with D-Lo on commentary you wouldn’t know it from listening to them because they worked together like they have been each other’s partners for years. Tom like a true professional did his researched and knew all the storylines and their histories.
I saw the card for this show and build up on some of the marquee match ups and it motivated me to pay for the event and I wanted to give you my honest thoughts on the show and if I felt I got my money’s worth.
Opening Match: First Ever Knockouts Ultimate X – Number one contender to the Knockouts title – Tasha Steelz vs Alisha Edwards vs Chelsea Green vs Jordynne Grace vs Lady Frost vs Rosemary
It is incredibly hard to believe in the almost 20-year history they never had a knockouts Ultimate-X match, and these ladies had an incredibly legacy to live up to in this match. These women gave it their all in this match and like any ultimate-x match it was chaotic. There were a lot of dives to the outside on a pile of competitors, in general it is such an overdone spot for years but for this type of match I understand why they did them. Was this the greatest ultimate-x match? No, but it kicked the PPV off with excitement and these women gave it their all and broke down another barrier proving that women can have any match that the men can have. These women in the match are often overlooked when people talk about the top women rosters in the business, and they had something to prove, and they did it in my opinion. Steelz came out on top after a struggle with Chelsea Green while wrapped around the cables fighting for the hanging X.
Impact X-Division Championship Match – Trey Miguel (c) vs Steve Maclin
This match was about living up to the legacy of the X-Division and two men with something to prove. Miguel was known as a trio’s guy as a part of the Rascalz and is now on his own proving himself as a singles guy. Steve Maclin wants to prove that WWE were wrong to release him. These men put on a great match that made both men look really good. Maclin has been undefeated since his Impact debut and Miguel pulled off the win and it was a believable win for the underdog to retain the title.