Pre-Show: Impact Digital Media Champion Brian Myers def. Bhupinder Gujjar
I'm pretty sure Gujjar has been undefeated in one-on-one competition up to this point, so he had a decent chance of taking the title here. He can hold his own in the ring, but I still think his character could use some work because he's not overly interesting at the moment. That said, Myers is the perfect person for him to be working with at this stage and they had a solid match.
Pre-Show: VXT def. Rosemary and Taya Valkyrie to Win the Impact Knockouts Tag Team Championship
Deonna Purrazzo and Chelsea Green have been trying to do this VXT tag team for a few years now, dating back to their time in WWE NXT, so it's cool they were finally able to make it happen in IMPACT. They're a strong addition to the division as a duo and have quality chemistry together, as seen here. These Knockouts tag title matches are rarely above average, but this was well worked and Rosemary accidentally misting Valkyrie was what cost them the belts in the end.
Impact X-Division Champion "Speedball" Mike Bailey def. Jack Evans
Evans was originally scheduled to take part in the Ultimate X match for the Impact X-Division Championship at Slammiversary (which was ultimately won by Bailey) but was pulled at the last minute, I believe due to an injury. He didn't appear on IMPACT! Wrestling leading up to Emergence, so there wasn't any build behind this bout, but it was fun from an in-ring standpoint and it was another top-notch title defense from Bailey.
Violent By Design (Eric Young and Deaner) def. Chris Sabin and Kushida
What an absolute blast this was. I haven't seen Sabin and Kushida team up much at all, but they worked wonderfully as partners. Meanwhile, Violent By Design shouldn't be slept on. They're a great group and any variation of the three is terrific. This was nicely paced and all four guys had their time to shine. Kushida wasn't pinned, so I was fine with his team losing, not to mention that Violent By Design needed the victory after losing a lot lately.
Heath Attacked Kenny King
King called out Heath in the ring for his recent attacks on Honor No More, and while being distracted by Sami Callihan and Steve Maclin brawling in the crowd, Heath again ambushed King from behind before cutting a fiery promo about having it out for the group. This whole segment was well done and set up Heath vs. King for some point down the line. I assume Heath wins that one to give him some credibility before losing one of the other members.
Bandido def. Rey Horus
I've been wondering where the hell Bandido has been lately, but I guess he's just been doing his thing in AAA. I know he popped up in MLW not too long ago, but you'd think AEW/ROH would've signed him by now given he's a former ROH World Champion. Nonetheless, I was happy to see him here along with Horus. They had a really fun sprint as I thought they would. This had no storyline significance, but it was a cool attraction for this show and I hope it isn't the last time we see them in IMPACT.
Sami Callihan def. Steve Maclin in a No Disqualification Match
These two were supposed to go on second on the main card but brawled in the aisleway before the bell could ring. Their brawl carried over into the segment with King and Heath and officially kicked off here with Scott D'Amore giving it a No Disqualification stipulation and banning Moose from ringside. I know Callihan is calls himself "The Death Machine", but this was the third straight hardcore match he's had on an IMPACT pay-per-view/Impact Plus special. I wish they'd tone it down a bit and stop doing them so frequently to make them mean more. The crowd was into this, but it wasn't my cup of tea, personally.
Honor No More (Eddie Edwards, Matt Taven, Mike Bennett, Vincent and PCO) def. Bullet Club (Impact World Tag Team Champions The Good Brothers, Ace Austin, Chris Bey and Hikuleo) in an Anything Goes Match
Whose bright idea was it to put two hardcore matches back-to-back? That was overkill, and in retrospect, I would have had Callihan vs. Maclin headline an episode of IMPACT! Wrestling and put the Impact Knockouts Tag Team Championship match on the main card instead. Per the stipulation, Taven and Bennett have earned an Impact World Tag Team Championship opportunity with the win, but the group would have had to disband if they lost here. Breaking them up at this point would have been premature (despite their shaky booking so far), so I was happy with the result. This was all-out war, and since we've seen it before from these teams, I wasn't enamored with a lot of what they did. I'll give them credit for beating the hell out of each other and taking their fight all over the place. That made it unique and the Chicago crowd ate it up.
Impact Knockouts World Champion Jordynne Grace def. Mia Yim
I love that Yim has had a chance to really showcase her skills since returning to IMPACT. She was a background player during her initial run with the company and didn't have many opportunities to stand out during her WWE run. She and Grace had a strong match and the crowd was into the action. Ultimately, Grace retaining the title was the right call as we head toward Grace vs. Masha Slamovich, presumably at Bound for Glory.
Impact World Champion Josh Alexander def. Alex Shelley
Amazingly, this was Shelley's first-ever shot at the Impact World Championship. As expected, he put forth a fantastic effort despite the outcome never being in doubt for me. Also as expected, he and Alexander had an exceptional match and put on a wrestling clinic. I appreciated that this received as much time as it did and the way they gradually picked up the pace as they approached the final stretch was brilliant. There were no shenanigans here and that was the best part since it's such a stark contrast to how TNA pay-per-views used to end years ago.
IMPACT has a done an awesome job of building up its four annual pay-per-views as special and then making the monthly Impact Plus shows eventful as well. They typically don't feature too many newsworthy moments or title changes, but the in-ring action is consistently is top-notch and the three hours fly by. This was another excellent event from IMPACT and well worth watching if you missed it. There could have been a little less of the hardcore stuff, but at least there was a variety of styles across the card.