I feel like I owe the following people an apology:
Vince McMahon, Vince Russo, Ed Ferrera, anyone who ever booked an awful WCW show, anyone who has ever booked a terrible indy show, anyone who has ever booked an awful wrestling show in general.
Because those people have never booked a show as bad as the March 9th, 2017 Impact Wrestling show.
This isn’t going to be my usual breakdown of every single match because I didn’t go into this show expecting to chronicle how completely awful it was. I wanted this show to be watchable and enjoyable. I wanted to like this. I wanted to have another wrestling show that I could watch every week and enjoy.
Instead I got two hours of Josh Matthews and Jeremy Borash bickering with each other. I got two hours of being reminded of all the amazing wrestlers who are no longer with this company. I got two hours of rebranding the show from TNA to Impact Wrestling only for the title belt to still say “TNA” right on it. And the belt being zoomed in on for a good minute. You would think, since they got Bruce Prichard on their show thanks to his podcast, they would know they could have gotten a new custom made belt from Leather by Dan for like $1,000 dollars.
This show was doomed from the start. The show starts and Eddie Edwards is brawling in the crowd with Davey Richards. No reason given, just two dudes, dressed like fans, fighting. Since neither is very large, you could have easily assumed this was two fans fighting. This was after the first video of all the great wrestlers who aren’t in TNA anymore. Whoops. Impact. They aren’t in Impact anymore. So then the brawl, and then the announcers are introduced and Josh Matthews just starts yelling about a chair and headset that is ringside with them. JB is introduced, and they bicker with each other. Matthews talks about WWE, JB talks about Tenay, neither of them talk about the show they are at and paid to commentate on. This would continue literally all night. Matthews was already a legendarily bad announcer. Having him act like an obnoxious prick seems like TNA…shit, I mean Impact, took a bet. Someone said “I bet you can’t make Matthews anymore insufferable” and they said “you are fucking on!”
There were matches. Reno Scum debuted. Matthews and Borash were so busy arguing that they said the names of the new guys once and never told you which one was which. My poor wife, who agreed to take this journey with me tonight, looked up the names on her phone. Don’t ask me what they were because I already forgot. They had a match with the DCC and they won. Matthews acted like this was a bullshit fluke and no one should care about it. Done. There was a four way with a bunch of X-Division guys that only the hardest of hardcore fans would have heard of. At least there was continuity here with the Allie/Braxton Sutter story with the other girl coming out in her wedding dress still. I don’t know her name because, again, the announcers were arguing the whole time. The match was fine if you like a bunch of random shit happening for no reason. There was also a women’s match. It was awful.
But the real lowlights on the show were Bruce Prichard and Dutch Mantell. I love Prichard’s podcast. I think he is entertaining and Conrad is a GREAT host. Why on earth Impact (got it right that time) felt the need to put him on TV based on that is beyond me. No one in the crowd knew who he was, he basically said that he was in WWF when all the greats like Hogan, Austin and Rock were there, and he just kind of came out there to get his “not a rib” line in. So he did his promo about how much this company used to suck and introduced Bobby Lashley. The world champ. Of this company that before tonight used to suck. Wouldn’t that mean he sucked? Alberto El Patron debuted here as well, and he was his usual plain boring self. Later, Dutch Mantell came out and cut a promo about how many awesome wrestlers used to wrestle here. He showed pictures too. AJ Styles, Samoa Joe, Sting, Hogan, Flair, Nash, Booker, Christian and maybe some more because I got up to make tea. That was literally all his promo was: talking about all the people that used to be great in this company.
Honestly, what the fuck were they thinking? Imagine if you turned on a TV show and all they did was talk about how last season sucked, and three seasons ago all these people that were big stars were on the show but they aren’t anymore because they are on bigger, more successful shows. Who the fuck would want to watch that? Someone, Jarret, D’Amore, Mantell, Prichard, or some combination thought this was compelling TV. They thought this would get people interested in the product: tell them how awful it has been while pointing out all the talented people that have left. While also having two announcers just yell and scream at each other for two hours while ignoring the action in the ring.
There were some watchable moments on this show. Cody Rhodes was semi fun here, acting like he wanted to fight Moose because he knew Moose was in Japan. I hate Cody on indy shows and in NJPW, but he is great here. That’s more a comment on how low the bar is here. The Alberto vs. Lashley main event was fun, and there was some fun stuff with Jeff and Matt Hardy fighting Smoking Joe the kangaroo. And there was a shoot owl during the opening video. Like, a legit bird of prey. At first, that was very confusing, but within 20 minutes it was only the 5th or 6th most confusing moment of the night.
This was, easily, the worst wrestling show I have ever seen. I will NEVER watch a full episode of Impact wrestling again. I will NEVER spend a dime on Impact wrestling. I will watch highlights of some of the new guys coming in, because there is a tag team that I have seen on the local level that debuts in a few weeks, but that is the extant of my tolerance for Impact wrestling. I never wanted this company to go out of business before tonight. After tonight, I hope they go out of business, the Impact Zone burns down, and everyone involved with the production of this show NEVER works in the wrestling business again. If you didn’t watch this, don’t. Don’t ever. If you did watch it, I am thinking of starting a support group. You should do what I did: turn on the WWE Network and watch something fun on there. I picked some Dangerous Alliance era WCW.
If you disagree with anything I wrote, you can reach me on twitter at @OMGlancy or you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Or email@example.com. Whichever works for you.