July 22nd 2018 was the date of the 16th installment of Impact Wrestling’s Slammiversary show and it did not disappoint.
With only a few minor hiccups in Rich Swann getting replaced and Evan Bourne almost breaking his neck, I would say that this show was a massive success and a huge eye-opener for a lot of fans of pro wrestling. For many, many, many years — TNA/Impact has been the butt of jokes by countless people on Twitter, the dirt sheets and fans alike but Slammiversary XVI goes to show you that TNA is officially dead and Impact Wrestling is truly here to make an Impact.
Here is my recap of Slammiversary XVI.
Taiji Ishimori vs. Petey Williams vs. Fenix vs. Johnny Impact
The opening contest was a Fatal 4-Way between four incredible talents in Fenix, Petey Williams, Taiji Ishimori, and Johnny Impact. The crowd was very pumped from the beginning and these four men gave everyone in attendance a reason to be excited.
There were definitely a lot of highlights in this match with lots of high-flying action from all four men involved. I myself am not a fan of the repeated Tower of Doom spot but Petey Williams took a shattering Samoan drop as Johnny Impact had him on his shoulders and then Taiji Ishimori came over and brought both men down.
Ishimori hits a double underhook lung blower on Fenix but Williams broke up the pin. Impact, who was outside on the ramp, jumps into the ring and superkicks Fenix. Ishimori kicks Impact while Williams comes off the ropes and into a superkick from Fenix followed by Impact and Fenix doing a double roundhouse kick spot. Everyone is on the floor and a ‘This is Awesome’ chant is happening. After a pin attempt on Williams by Impact, Ishimori plants Impact with an Uranage and goes to the top rope to hit Impact with a 450 splash. Williams comes in and picks up Ishimori after the splash and hits him with a Canadian Destroyer followed by Fenix hitting Williams with a springboard double foot stomp. Fenix then picks up Williams for a muscle buster but then Impact nails Fenix with a superkick, which causes him to hit Williams with the muscle buster. Fenix falls into the right place for Impact to hit starship pain on Fenix and getting the 1-2-3 for the victory on his return. This was an excellent match and a great way to open Slammiversary XVI.
Tessa Blanchard vs. Allie
Up next was a singles bout between Tessa Blanchard and Allie. This was a very straightforward kick-ass wrestling match. Both girls got a ton of offense in on each other with Tessa Blanchard almost crushing Allie’s skull in with a top rope hurricanrana and Allie kicking Blanchard’s head off with a superkick. The end came when Allie picked up Tessa Blanchard in a fireman’s carry but Blanchard reversed it into a vicious looking hammerlock DDT for the victory. This match was a great example of the women being able to be just as entertaining as the men and giving it their all.
Eddie Edwards vs. Tommy Dreamer (House of Hardcore Match)
Following the women was a House of Hardcore Match between Eddie Edwards and Tommy Dreamer and hardcore is a very good way to describe this match. Edwards and Dreamer gave it their all and after a staple gun to the face from Dreamer to Edwards and Dreamer putting Edwards through a pair of chairs from the top rope, it still wasn’t enough to give him the win. After Dreamer set up a table and was about to light it on fire, Edwards hit Dreamer with a low blow and then a Shining Wizard on a chair to give Edwards the victory over the legend Tommy Dreamer. After the match, Edwards would break down and apologize to Dreamer, which Dreamer seemingly accepted. Edwards’s wife would come out to tell Edwards to accept Dreamers handshake to which he did. Dreamer would pass off a kendo stick to Edwards and leave giving us a nice passing of the torch moment.
Impact X Division Championship
Matt Sydal (c) vs. Brian Cage
Now I know what you’re thinking. Why is Brian Cage wrestling for the X Division title? Well, if you have any doubts that big men can’t move like the little guys then you need to seek out this match immediately. Cage and Sydal both killed each other out there always one-upping each other and it was fantastic. A very good X Division Championship match which led to a new champion when Sydal attempted the shooting star press but got caught on the rope giving Cage the chance to pile drive Sydal into the mat and pick up the win and become the new X Division Champion.
Impact Knockouts Championship
Su Yung (c) vs. Madison Rayne
Su Yung came out to the ring in a casket, which is all you really need to know about this match. Su Yung had the upper hand most of the match but Madison Rayne gave it her best shot pulling out all the stops but one mistake led to Su Yung applying the mandible claw causing Rayne to pass out. I admittedly don’t know a whole lot about Su Yung but after this match and everything that happened after I don’t think I want too. After the match, Su Yung would call the undead bridesmaids to open the casket and Yung would put Rayne in the casket and take her away.
Impact World Tag Team Championship
LAX (c) vs. OGz (5150 Street Fight)
This match was as advertised and that was a street fight. These four men went out there and beat the crap out of each other until they had nothing left to give. LAX and The OGz did everything in their power to pull out the victory but in the end LAX with help of Konan and a bag of thumbtacks got the victory over The OGz. It was a really solid match and a really solid ending when OGz after the match would beat down LAX and then take the World Tag Team Titles signaling that the war is not over.
Mask vs. Hair
Pentagon Jr. vs. Sami Callihan
This match was an absolute battle! Pentagon Jr. and Sami Callihan left everything they had in the ring. Pentagon and Callihan wasted no time when the bell rang to start attacking each other after a little taunting and it was a massacre the entire match. OVE took some nasty looking chair shots to the head and Pentagon showed no remorse for any of it. Both men traded quite a few headshots with some railroad spikes Callihan introduced into the match and it only enhanced the beat down each man was giving each other. Pentagon was able to get the upper hand in the end by breaking Callihan’s arm and hitting a package piledriver for the win. After the match, OVE attacked Pentagon to let Callihan escape but Pentagon fought off OVE and Fenix made sure Callihan stuck around for the head shaving. I have a feeling this feud isn’t over quite yet.
Impact World Championship
Austin Aries (c) vs. Moose
The Main Event of this evening was Moose vs. Austin Aries for the Impact World Championship. I am a really big fan of Moose and everything he does and if you aren’t sold on him or Aries please do yourself a favor and check this match out when you can. Moose and Aries put on a fantastic match to close off an already incredible show. Moose and Aries both gave it their all but after a few dirty tactics from Aries, he was able to hit Moose with a brainbuster and pick up the pin-fall victory to retain the title. I personally think this should have been Moose’s time but I respect them for building Austin Aries to be a huge star. Moose will get his time to shine bur right now Impact in 2018 belongs to Austin Aries.
All together, I would give this show an A+. I wasn’t bored once while watching his and can safely say this was one of the best Impact Wrestling shows I’ve ever seen and one of the best shows I’ve seen in 2018 all year. Absolutely knocked it out of the park. What did you think of Slammiversary XVI? Do you think the right people won? Do you think Moose will be Impact World Champion by the end of 2018? What did you think was the most extreme match or moment from the show?
If you want to discuss any of this you can find and follow me on Twitter @UberTieGuy and real quick I’d like to give a big shout out to Fight Booth for letting me write this review for them. If you come across this and don’t already follow them on Twitter make sure to do that @FightBoothPW.
This guest post comes to us via Colin Dunn (@UberTieGuy)