Manolo Has Pizzazz
Impact held their final special event of the year. Final Resolution on the Impact Plus app featured Rich Swann battling Chris Bey for the World title, Deonna Purrazzo fighting Rosemary for the Knockouts belt, and Rohit Raju’s open challenge for the X-Division strap.
Rich Swann retains
Rich Swann defended the Impact World Championship against Chris Bey in the main event. Swann controlled the action early. Bey turned the tide by getting his knees up on a Rolling Thunder. Bey attacked with a rolling cutter. The pace was a steady upward incline of flashy moves toward the finish.
Swann hit a cartwheel standing moonsault. He went for a second cartwheel attack, but Bey rolled out of the way. Bey exploded for a Code Red. The champ stayed alive on the three count. Both men stood up to exchange punches and kicks. Swann was more fleet of foot and put Bey down with a spinning kick. Various quick pin attempts were traded back and forth. Bey came out on top of that sequence with a cradle slam.
Bey was feeling cocky with momentum on his side. He wasted time talking trash. Bey went to finish it with a springboard cutter, but Swann escaped impact with a handspring. A kick to Bey’s face followed. Swann measured a precision kick to the mush. Phoenix splash closed the night for Swann to retain.
After the contest, Moose slowly walked to the ring with the TNA Heavyweight Championship in hand. Moose picked up the Impact title and handed it to Swann in a statement that he is controlling the narrative.
That was an exciting main event to conclude Final Resolution. Both men performed well. Swann took it up a notch when the chips were down. This was Bey’s highest profile match to date in Impact, and he came ready to put on a show.
It will be interesting to see how the situation with Moose shakes out. Kenny Omega’s unexpected appearances with Impact may shove his story to the side. Impact’s next special event is Genesis on January 9. The Hard to Kill PPV is January 16. The PPV would be prime real estate for Omega to headline. Squeezing Moose in at Genesis spells doom for his Impact title aspirations. Waiting until the following PPV for Moose’s big shot might destroy all of his momentum. Whatever happens, I’d like to see Omega challenge Moose to take the TNA belt. Even though it is defunct, it would still be a funny collectible for Omega.
The Virtuosa still Knockouts champ
Deonna Purrazzo defended the Knockouts Championship against Rosemary. The demon assassin struck first with a spear. Purrazzo fled the ring to regroup. She turned the tide by ramming Rosemary’s shoulder into the ring post. Purrazzo focused on damaging the arm and shoulder. Rosemary had a minor comeback culminating with a fireman’s carry slam, but Kimber Lee pulled the referee out of the ring on the count. Taya gave chase to Lee. Back in the ring, Purrazzo hit a pump kick then a Gotch piledriver to retain her title.
This was a basic story with solid execution. I’d chalk it up as a strong win for Purrazzo. Rosemary never got in the groove to make me believe she could find victory. It seems that Taya is next in line, and I’m excited for that possibility, especially if Taya is psychotic. La Wera Loca is the best Taya.
New X-Division Champion
Rohit Raju brought back the Defeat Rohit Challenge with the X-Division strap on the line. It was open to anyone, except TJP. Manik answered the call. It is well-known that TJP played that masked man in the past. It was also fairly obvious that he was under the mask on this evening as well. The match itself was a jamming display of athleticism. It was my favorite bout on the card.
Manik was too quick and too crafty for Rohit in the early going. Rohit was able to shift momentum in his favor with a flying stomp to the back. Manik kicked out of the pinfall. Rohit hit a flatliner, but Manik kicked out again. Rohit locked in a crossface submission, however, Manik got to his feet to counter into an octopus stretch. Rohit fought hard to reach the ropes for the break.
The finish involved referee teases. Manik almost crashed into the official, but he was able to stop short before contact. Rohit also almost collided with the referee. He stopped short as well, then Manik pounced for a surprise roll-up to win the X-Division crown.
It was a fitting loss for Rohit. He’s been sneaky with cheating tactics during his entire reign, so this ref spot was a form of comeuppance. Unfortunately, I don’t think it was true to his character. The Rohit I enjoy would have steamrolled over the ref on purpose for an intentional disqualification. With the champion’s advantage, he would have retained the belt.
The fallout from this bout should be interesting. If Rohit can prove it was TJP under the mask, then the win should become null and void. Maybe Rohit should hire Tommy Dreamer to investigate. His detective skills did crack the case of who shot John E. Bravo.
If the X-Division Championship does remain with Manik, then it is in good hands. TJP is on fire with quality match after quality match in the Impact Zone. It should also freshen up the scene, since Rohit pretty much ran through the ladder of competition.
Let’s sprint through the rest of the Final Resolution card.
Karl Anderson defeated Ethan Page. Prior to the bout, Kenny Omega and Don Callis playfully wondered if Anderson was still a singles star. Anderson went out to prove a point. The bout was competitive. In the end, Anderson shoved Page off the turnbuckles to avoid a superplex. Anderson flew for a clothesline then finished it with a Gun Stun cutter. Afterward, Josh Alexander was upset that Page lost their tag title opportunity. Page frantically explained that he has a plan, but Alexander took off his The North jacket and exited by himself.
Eric Young defeated Rhino, plus a heel turn. Joe Doering was ringside. The referee was squished on an Irish whip. Young wanted to use his hockey mask to hit Rhino, but the Deaners ran in for the save. Cody grabbed it and shockingly hit Cousin Jake. Young nodded with approval. Young then bashed Rhino with the mask to win once the referee woke up.
Hernandez defeated Fallah Bahh. Tasha Steelz was ring announcer, and Kiera Hogan was special referee. The victor was supposed to win the money roll originally belonging to Super Mex. Hogan slow counted Bahh. Hernandez was able to turn the tide for a flying splash to win. When Hogan and Steelz came up short on the cash, Hernandez pulled out a weapon. The ladies hightailed it out of there.
Tenille Dashwood & Kaleb Konley defeated Alisha & Eddie Edwards. The Edwards family had momentum after a tornado DDT from Alisha and a suicide dive from Eddie. Alisha climbed the corner aiming to take flight, but Sami Callihan’s ICU gimmick turned out the lights. In the confusion, Tenille snatched victory with a single-leg dropkick to Alisha. Afterward, Sami came from under the ring to hit Eddie with a bat then a piledriver. Sami also planned to piledrive Alisha until security broke it up.
Havok & Nevaeh defeated Sea Stars. Nevaeh scored the win on a teamwork cutter. The result of this contest was never in doubt.
Tommy Dreamer defeated Larry D. Old School Rules meant the flavor was softcore. Foreign objects were used but nothing too crazy. Acey Romero’s run-in to interfere was flummoxed by John E. Bravo. Romero crashed into a table when Bravo juked out of the way. Dreamer low-blowed Larry with a kendo stick then finished him with a DDT. Per the stipulation, Larry D was off to jail for shooting Bravo.
Share your thoughts on Final Resolution. Which match stole the show? How would you book the schedule of future title fights for the triangle of Kenny Omega, Rich Swann, and Moose?