Impact held its grand gala of professional wrestling on Friday as Bound for Glory emanated from the Albany Armory in Albany, New York. The eight-match delicacy with a Hall of Fame garnish had no fat on the bone. Every course was good to great, including some pleasant surprises.
Pre show festivities saw Brian Myers successfully defend the Digital Media Title against the debuting Dirty Dango (FKA Fandango). I’m happy to see my former nemesis regularly working for one of the bigger promotions again.
Raven was inducted into the Impact Hall of Fame by his career rival Tommy Dreamer. Raven gave an uncharacteristically raw speech that resonated with the live crowd. Raven said it was easy to be a heel and get booed because he felt he never deserved to be cheered.
The former ECW World Champion said he would put his feuds with Sandman and Dreamer against any in wrestling. Raven also gave a lot of love to Len Denton as The Grappler gave him a vital piece of booking advice that shaped his career.
Frankie Kazarian defeated “Speedball” Mike Bailey in an upset to capture the X-Division Championship. Impact is all in on Bailey, which is why it was surprising to see him lose. It was the perfect opener as the action increased with each bump of the canvas. It’s hard to do that without becoming a spot fest, but Kazarian and Bailey made it work.
The Motor Machine Machine Guns always have their working boots on, no matter who is standing across the ring from them. The Kingdom more than held up their end as they retained the tag team titles in a nice match that kept things interesting from bell to bell.
Bully Ray made his return to Impact and won the twenty-person “Call Your Shot” gauntlet match. Now, the former 2x world champion can vie for any Impact Title for one year. It was a fun match with some good moments, but Bully Ray beating Steve Maclin in the final frame seemed like a missed opportunity.
Maclin has impressed since he arrived in Impact and could have been put in the position as the new villainous foil to Josh Alexander. Impact’s television ratings are low, and they need to do something different to stop running in place and move forward as a promotion. Maclin is a star for the future, but Bully Ray can draw more eyes to the product today.
Bobby Fish’s recent arrival on the heels of internet controversy made him a decent pick to win. However, the narrative of his career is always the bridesmaid and never the bride. Joe Hendry made his highly anticipated debut. While it was too small of a sample size to say yay or nay on the Scottish star, it looks like he has something that can serve Impact well.
Bound for Glory’s double main event dramatically delivered the goods. Jordynne Grace ended the undefeated streak of the dominant Masha Slamovich to retain the Knockouts Title.
Grace/Slamovich was the best-built match heading into the show, and their work throughout the match conveyed that big fight feel. It felt like Slamovich’s night, but solely looking at it from the perspective of “good guys vs. bad guys,” Grace’s win was a satisfying conclusion to an epic showdown.
Josh Alexander’s reign as Impact World Champion is still intact as he bested Honor No More’s Eddie Edwards. It was a compelling affair with great wrestling while exhibiting Alexander and Edwards’ range as overall performers.
Alexander is still cementing his place as the top guy of the promotion, while Edwards is revered for his in ring work. Edwards’ Die Hard Driver to Alexander on the exposed wooden floor was the emotional crescendo of the match.
Alexander fought to escape the pain and agony he’d eventually endure. Once Edwards hit the driver, it looked brutal while being applied safely. Great technique and theater. Alexander constantly sold the intense pain he was in, which was refreshing since most only sell it for a few moments.
Even in Alexander’s comeback, he reminded the audience his body could give out at any moment. This was made it even better when Alexander endured outside interference and hit a desperate C4 Spike for the win.
Bound for Glory ended with the perfect 1-2 punch. It’s hard to call one outing better than the other. However, Grace vs. Slamovich was the best match, and Alexander vs. Edwards told the best story.
-Impact Bound for Glory 2022 Results
Brian Myers pinned Dirty Dango to retain the Digital Media Championship.
Frankie Kazarian beat “Speedball” Mike Bailey to win the X-Division Championship.
Death Dollz beat VXT to become the new Knockouts Tag Team Champions.
The Kingdom defeated Motor City Machine Guns to retain the World Tag Team Championship.
Bully Ray won the Call Your Shot gauntlet match.
Jordynne Grace beat Masha Slamovich to retain the Knockouts Championship.
Josh Alexander defeated Eddie Edwards to retain the Impact World Championship.