By Don “The Predictor” Murphy (Twitter: @DonThePredictor)
Sorry for the delay in today’s preview for tonight’s “Hard to Kill” Event, presented by Impact Wrestling, due to some family issues that had to be tended to this past week. But, I did want to post a brief preview for those watching tonight’s event because, much like Impact’s other recent events, this one is shaping up to be really good. A partnership with AEW can only bring more exposure to the product and, as I’ve said before, when Impact sticks to wrestling, it always puts on a solid show. The issue is that sometimes they can’t help themselves and try to think outside the box, which almost always fails (e.g. Wrestle House, smoke circles, undead realms and a “Who Shot John E. Bravo?” mystery). I don’t think any of that will come into play tonight aside from the Karate Man and Ethan Page match, so we should be in the clear for the most part. Let’s run down the card!
The Elite (Kenny Omega, Doc Gallows and Karl Anderson) defeats Rich Swann, Chris Sabin, and Moose: Kenny Omega’s first in-ring appearance for Impact Wrestling should bring some eyeballs to the event. I do think you could have still done that without including Rich Swann in a six-man tag team match, which would have allowed him to defend the title on the show. You also have Alex Shelley’s late scratch, which opened the door for Moose. This doesn’t really make much sense except now you have the hook of whether or not Moose and Swann can co-exist. I will assume that this friction will lead to the Elite going over.
Kiera Hogan and Tasha Steelz defeat Havok and Nevaeh to win the vacant Impact Knockouts Tag Team Championship: The problem I have here is I don’t know who I’m supposed to root for since both teams are heels. I’m giving the edge to Hogan and Steelz because of their characters and personalities. I think they’ll do a better job getting heat once they have credible babyface challengers.
Manik retains the Impact X Division Championship over Chris Bey and Rohit Raju: Unfortunately, I think this will be less about the good match it could be and more about comic follies of Bey and Raju tripping over each other to unmask Manik as TJP.
Deonna Purrazzo retains the Impact Knockouts Championship over Taya Valkyrie: Similar to how Impact made Valkyrie a credible champion by giving her a lengthy reign – now’s the time for Valkyrie to give back and continue to build Purrazzo in the same light. With a tremendous upside, Purrazzo needs to keep her reign intact.
Eric Young, Deaner, and Joe Doering defeat Cousin Jake, Rhino, and Tommy Dreamer: I’m intrigued by the Young, Deaner and Doering faction, but it’s time for them to move into higher profile feuds to really see what guys like Deaner and Doering can do in a higher profile spot.
Barbed Wire Massacre: Eddie Edwards defeats Sami Callihan: This was one of Impact’s best programs last year and I am sure this will be a good match. I can’t say I’m all that hooked on the involvement of Alisha Edwards and Ken Shamrock. Callihan has also been a fantastic heel, but he’s swerved too deep into his hacker gimmick, which has caused him to lose some of the magic he had last year.
The Karate Man defeats Ethan Page: I don’t know what to make of this match, aside from the fact that it will likely be some kind of a cinematic. Hopefully, it won’t be too over the top and if anything, it’s brief.
Rosemary and Crazzy Steve defeat Tenille Dashwood and Kaleb with a K: We know that Rosemary can do more than this, so let’s hope that this is a short-lived feud so that she can re-emerge into a higher profile spot in the women’s division.
Josh Alexander defeats Brian Myers: I’m guessing the North is finished as a tag team in Impact. There’s also rumblings that their contracts won’t be renewed, so this could be a way of starting to phase Page and Alexander out of the company.