Dezmond Xavier def. Drago in a Super X Cup Semifinal Match
It blows my mind that GFW has had Xavier on their roster for quite some time and only now is he really starting to shine. The guy is a great wrestler, and given Drago is as well, this was a terrific match as expected. They brought the best out of each other and their similar styles resulted in an exciting back-and-forth bout. I believe Xavier is signed to GFW whereas Drago is not, so it made sense for him to advance to the finals. His post-match promo was also solid.
Mumbai Cat def. Trevor Lee
Ah, the oldest trick in the wrestling book: the heel has a match against a masked opponent, who then turns out to be their rival. However, it worked wonderfully because Lee has been facing lower-card wrestlers for weeks now and this was a clever payoff to that storyline (also explaining why Dutt was allowed into the building after previously being banned). Dutt finally got his hands on Lee and subsequently challenged him to a Ladder match for the title at Destination X.
Eli Drake vs. Eddie Edwards Went to a No Contest
Drake is always one of my favorites to watch on Impact, so I was disappointed this match didn't end up coming to fruition. Instead, we witnessed Kongo Kong wrecking havoc backstage and laying out Edwards. Yes, Kong is currently feuding with Grado, but obviously this was designed to transition him into a rivalry with Edwards in the near future. Edwards has been treading water since his program with Davey Richards culminated anyway, and he might be able to carry Kong to a passable match.
Ethan Carter III def. Moose to Win the Impact Grand Championship
My lack of enthusiasm for this type of match has been well-documented, but to their credit, EC3 and Moose made the most out of it. The first two rounds were nothing special, but they picked up the pace in the third round and did everything possible to get the crowd invested. They kicked out of finishers and were evenly-matched, which is why the finish was touted as a shocker when Bruce Prichard awarded the victory (and the title) to EC3. We still don't know whether he's supposed to be a babyface or a heel, but I figured this cemented him as the latter.
Grado, Suicide and Braxton Sutter def. KM, Fallah Bahh and Mario Bokara
Well, this was a weird match. None of these guys have anything to do with one another at the moment, so it was a random clash of competitors. The match itself was all right, but it looked like the sole purpose it served was to set up the Grado and Kong encounter afterward. I was wondering why Sutter was on the babyface side after teasing a heel turn recently, but he abandoned Grado when he was ambushed by Kong, so that was a logical way of furthering that story.
Ethan Carter III Celebrated His Impact Grand Championship Victory
I'm surprised this was saved for later on in the show and he didn't just cut this same promo immediately after winning the title, but it was good, nevertheless. EC3 is such an excellent heel and this over-the-top gloating was missed when he was a babyface. This was short, sweet and essentially exactly what it needed to be. I assume his feud with Moose will continue for a while longer and he can have a fun run as champion if booked the right way.
LAX def. The Patron Family
Once again, the in-ring action was fine, but I just can't bring myself to care about this angle. LAX was riding a wave of momentum before this program started, and while they've been in the main event slot for the last few weeks, they have yet to be positioned as equals to Alberto El Patron. They may have emerged victorious here, but only after interference occurred. Plus, I was merely waiting for LAX's newest member to be revealed. Low Ki is a good choice, as it gives him something to do now that his rivalry with Dutt has wrapped up. Between Low Ki and Homicide being a part of the group, LAX might as well be The Beat Down Clan 2.0.
As I've said several times in recent weeks, most of these editions of Impact range from decent to entertaining, especially anything involving the X-Division, but the show falls off a cliff once the main event comes around. El Patron does nothing for me as the world champion, and although the main event for this show was mediocre, at least it ended with a cliffhanger with Low Ki joining LAX. He and El Patron is a fresh feud I can get behind. Additionally, I liked that the night kicked off with a match, something that is always appreciated.