Bullet Club (Chris Bey, Hikuleo and El Phantasmo) def. Chris Sabin and FinJuice
I really love the chemistry Sabin has with FinJuice. He's been bouncing all over the place this year from teaming with Alex Shelley and James Storm to feuding with Moose to challenging for the X-Division Championship, but he excels in everything he's involved in. I'm curious what match he'll ultimately be a part of at Bound for Glory. This was an enjoyable opener with everyone getting the chance to shine and Bullet Club winning as they should have.
Violent By Design Attacked Heath
I might be in the minority here, but this has been one of my favorite storylines on the show heading into Bound for Glory. The storytelling has been so simple yet so compelling. Rhino wasn't ready to embrace Heath last week, and this week, he didn't save him from Violent By Design. Heath spoke about his injury that kept him out of action for a year and knowing the old Rhino still exists. This is obviously leading to a tag team match at Bound for Glory and I'm looking forward to the Heath and Rhino reunion.
Tasha Steelz, Savannah Evans and Mercedes Martinez def. Kimber Lee, Brandi Lauren and Lady Frost
I believe all of these women will be competing in the women's tournament coming up at Knockouts Knockdown this Saturday on Impact Plus. It was so random to see Martinez out there like it wasn't a big deal even though she's fresh off her run in WWE NXT. She can be a major asset to IMPACT's Knockouts division if that's where she ends up, but maybe she's more content doing freelance stuff for now. This was a decent match, but almost everyone (if not everyone) seemed to be a heel and it made for an odd dynamic. The tease from Steelz and Martinez afterward was interesting, though.
Steve Maclin def. Petey Williams and Black Taurus in an Impact X-Division Championship Three-Way Qualifier
Maclin and Williams have been embroiled in a heated rivalry for months, so them continuing to have nice chemistry together shouldn't have come as much of a surprise. Throw Taurus in there and you have yourself a fun three-way. It wasn't as exciting as last week's, but it came close. Williams and Taurus would have been a better fit for the X-Division Championship match at Bound for Glory, but I understand Maclin is the one getting the aggressive push right now and made the most sense to win.
Rich Swann and Willie Mack def. The Learning Tree (Zicky Dice and Manny Lemons)
Swann and Mack previously beat Brian Myers and VSK. Unsurprisingly, Swann and Mack beat Myers' protégé Dice and Lemons even quicker. I'm a bit bummed Dice isn't doing his own thing and isn't positioned as more of a threat considering he's a former NWA Television Champion, but at least he's with a major promotion and he does the comedy stuff well. This was a total squash, but Myers and his men laying out the babyfaces afterward indicates this feud isn't over yet.
Impact World Champion Christian Cage and Josh Alexander def. Ace Austin and Madman Fulton
This was less about Austin and Fulton and more about Cage and Alexander attempting to coexist before they collide for the Impact World Championship at Bound for Glory. Nonetheless, it was very well wrestled as you'd only expect given who was involved and I liked how the heels were made to look credible in defeat with how much time this got. I'm still curious what Austin will be doing at Bound for Glory, but I maintain that a match with Christopher Daniels would be the best use of him.
Kudos to IMPACT for keeping their momentum heading into Bound for Glory in a few weeks. They're constantly bringing in new names and familiar faces and it has made the weekly product feel fresh and worthwhile. The in-ring action has been above average to boot and it has made these shows a treat to watch. The hype for Saturday's Knockouts Knockdown special on Impact Plus was also well done and I have no doubt IMPACT will do right by their women.