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Brace for IMPACT: Is Eric Young the right choice to headline Slammiversary?

Eric Young challenges Alexander at Slammiversary

Eric Young challenges Alexander at Slammiversary

Is Eric Young the right choice to headline Slammiversary?

Eric Young won a gauntlet for the gold match on this weeks IMPACT to earn a shot at Josh Alexander’s world heavyweight championship at this years Slammiversary on June 19. Is Eric Young the right choice to headline Slammiversary? Young has been primarily a tag team wrestler since last year and his only singles match in 2022 was a loss to Jay White. His last singles victory was a win over Rhino in a hardcore match back in December.

Eddie Edwards would be the more logical choice based on 2022 booking. His entire heel turn was based IMPACT picking Alexander over him to face Christian at Bound for Glory. Despite Honor No More’s losing streak as a group, which has turned around lately, Eddie has been kept strong, only losing by pin or submission once this year, to Ishii in April. But it seems like Edwards vs Alexander is being saved for Bound for Glory.

Eric Young is one of the most talented, underrated, and enduring stars in the 20 year history of IMPACT Wrestling. EY headlining a pay per view in 2022 may not be a sexy pick for those outside the IMPACT bubble, but he means a lot to those that his been following his journey in the promotion since 2004.  As JD Oliva pointed out in his article The Adaptable Eric Younghe has played every role from a dastardly heel in Team Canada, to a lovable and paranoid comedy figure, to under dog babyface world champion, to a maniacal villain capable of anything.  Is he the right choice to pop a huge buy rate? Maybe not. Will a main event between Alexander and Young be awesome? Absolutely, and I can’t wait to see it.


IMPACT! on AXS TV review

This weeks episode was centered around what I am calling the best Gauntlet for the Gold match in company history. IMPACT’s version of the Royal Rumble has been reserved for Bound for Glory in recent years and is almost always not very good. Its typically filled with bad comedy (Hornswoggle and Dreamer) and goes way too long. But this weeks flew by, had great action, and the comedy was actually good. The show also featured an excellent contest between Bullet Club’s Jay White and ELP vs Josh Alexander and Ishii.

HITS:

  • Gauntlet for the Gold: An excellent match that made for one of the more enjoyable hours of IMPACT in a long time. Many stars had the opportunity to shine but especially Sabin who went the distance, Morrissey who played the Diesel role well, Maclin who eliminated some big names and lasted til the end, and of course Young who got the victory. Young and Sabin, both of whom have been with the company off and on for most of its 20 year history, being the final two was very appropriate and their match left me wanting more.

  • Josh Alexander & Ishii defeat Bullet Club: NJPW’s Bullet Club suffered another defeat here as Ishii pinned ELP. One has to wonder how much longer the faction will be around with the Good Brother’s contracts coming up. New Japan seems to be ok with Bullet Club taking all these losses cause they keep sending them, but its very weird to me.
  • Kenny King vs. Chris Bey: Solid opener as King earns his way in to yet another Ultimate X match. Very surprising outcome as Kenny King never wins and Bey one of their more pushed stars. I’d much rather see Bey get the win here.

MISSES:

  • The Influence vs. Gisele Shaw and Alisha Edwards: Shaw and Edwards earned their title shot by simply becoming a team. But they couldn’t coexist and the Influence won. Time to blow up this division.

News:

  • Frankie Kazarian from AEW worked the IMPACT tapings this weekend in Kissimmie, FL. He wrestled Chris Sabin. This was likely part of the deal for AEW to get Morrissey and Purazzo on their show last week.
  • Several more stars returned to the promotion during the tapings this weekend. No huge names or anything, but some fun ones.
  • Gail Kim announced the first ever Knockouts Queen of the Mountain match for Slammiversary. Tasha Steelz will defend her title against Purazzo, Mia Yim, Chelsea Green, and Jordynne Grace.
  • Mia Yim signed a 6 month contract here per Fightful.
  • Matt Cardona and Chelsea Green missed the Newport, KY tapings because they were on their honeymoon, but returned this weekend.
  • Dave Meltzer gave Josh Alexander vs Tomohiro Ishii from four and a half stars. Its a higher rating than any of the Omega matches from his IMPACT title run last year. Thats the second Alexander match, join the match with Moose at Rebellion (4 1/4) that received over four stars in 2022.
  • Under Siege was almost a sellout as they sold 353 out of 380 reserved tickets, plus general admission. The TV taping the next night sold 81 reserved seats and the many tickets were given away. IMPACT ran a local mother’s day promotion where moms got in free, and wrestlers were giving away tickets at independent shows leading up to the event. Credit: WrestleTix, Lavie Margolin, and Dave Meltzer.
  • Fightful Select is reporting that Against All Odds and a subsequent taping will take place in Atlanta, Ga on July 1 and 2.
  • IMPACT Tag Team Champions The Briscoes have pulled out of several independent dates to due complications with Mark’s wife pregnancy. The team did work the IMPACT tapings in Kissimmie, Fl this weekend. Best wishes to the family in these difficult times.


Ratings:

The May 12 episode of IMPACT! on AXS TV averaged 125,000 viewers with a 0.03 demo. Total viewership is up from last weeks 108,000.  The demo rating is down from 0.04. The show ranked #116 on Showbuzz,

New Japan on AXS TV averaged 74, 000 viewers with a 0.02 demo for a show that seated Jon Moxley vs Will Ospreay from April’s Windy City Riot event. The show entered the Showbuzz Top 150 for the very first time, coming in at #140.


IMPACT Ratings 2022

Date Total Viewership Demo Notes
May-12 125,000 0.03 Gauntlet for the Gold; #116 on Showbuzz
May-5 108,000 0.04 Under Siege Go Home
Apr-28 107,000 0.02 Moose vs Alexander; NFL Draft competition
Apr-21 112,000 0.03
Apr-14 123,000 0.04
Apr-7 89,000 0.02
Mar-31 149,000 0.04 Bullet Club vs Motor City Machine Guns 2
Mar-24 100,000 0.02 Mickie vs Tasha
Mar-17 68,000 0.02 Josh Alexander vs Matt Taven
Mar-10 94,000 0.03 Sacrifice fallout
Mar-3 131,000 0.04 Sacrifice Go-home; #133 on Showbuzz
Feb-25 111,000 0.03 No Surrender fallout; #141 on Showbuzz
Feb-17 109,000 0.03 Bullet Club vs VBD; #131 on Showbuzz
Feb-10 117,000 0.03 W. Morrissey vs Brian Myers; #145 on Showbuzz
Feb-3 114,000 0.02 Bullet Club vs IMPACT
Jan-27 182,000 0.05 #104 on Showbuzz; PCO vs Chris Sabin
Jan-20 126,000 0.03 Josh Alexander vs Charlie Haas; #147 on Showbuzz
Jan-13  111,000 0.03 Deonna Purazzo vs Rok-C. #144 on Showbuzz
Jan-6 104,000 0.02 Hard to Kill “go-home”

Brace for IMPACT, hosted by JD Oliva and myself, is part of the Fight Game Media Network free feed. You can subscribe on Apple Podcasts and Spotify as well as find it wherever you listen to podcasts.

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