Now I know I shouldn’t get my hopes up about this show but really, it’s kind of hard not to in this case. Believe it or not, Impact Wrestling has actually put together a heck of a card and built it up quite well over the last few weeks. I want to see what they have for Slammiversary and there’s a good chance it’s going to be an awesome show. If nothing else, it’s not like they have a high benchmark to beat in order to have their best pay per view in years. Let’s get to it.

Allie vs. Tessa Blanchard

The more I see of Blanchard, the more impressed I am. She’s been in the promotion for all of a few months and they’re already pushing her to the moon. If Su Yung wasn’t Knockouts Champion, Blanchard probably would have won the thing weeks ago. Allie is a good test for her as she’s one of the most popular members of the roster and can go in the ring. This should be fun, especially with Allie being more serious as of late.

I’m going with Blanchard here, as while there’s nothing for her to do in the title hunt right now, a win is a lot more valuable to her than Allie. That being said, Allie needs a win to get her back on track. She took a bad hit when she lost the title to Yung and a win over Blanchard would help. Blanchard has lost enough already though so I’ll go with her to win here, as she should.

Tessa Blanchard Seeks REVENGE on Allie THIS SUNDAY at SLAMMIVERSARY 2018!

Pentagon Jr. vs. Sami Callihan

This is mask vs. hair and they’ve started to book Calliah the way he needs to be booked. He’s not the best in-ring worker and the shouting about how great Ohio is still doesn’t do much for me, but at least they’re booking him as a crazy brawler/lover of anarchy instead of going against his better characteristics.

However, Pentagon almost has to win here as he’s WAY too big of a star pretty much everywhere at the moment to lose one of his trademark things. Callihan’s hair isn’t exactly famous or anything and can be grown back in pretty short order. The match should be a good, violent brawl and with the roll that Pentagon has been on in recent months, there’s a good chance it’s going to be better than I’m expecting.

Sami Callihan vs Pentagon Jr: Mask vs Hair THIS SUNDAY at SLAMMIVERSARY XVI!

Eddie Edwards vs. Tommy Dreamer

I’m torn on this one. Edwards’ heel turn and descent into madness has been outstanding….but it’s Dreamer. The guy who has spent probably twice as long talking about ECW than he was actually in ECW. I respect what he did and how he came from nothing to become a nice something in wrestling, but he just doesn’t do anything for me. The whole “I’ve given everything to this business and don’t want you to end up like me” has been done and Dreamer playing the sad old man who can still be violent has lost its charm.

Of course Edwards wins here but the more interesting question is where does he go from here. There’s a ton of potential in that character and if Impact uses him properly, he could be a heck of a star. Just having him target someone new (say Pentagon for getting to hurt Callihan instead) and going all psycho on them could be great, as Edwards has knocked this thing further out of the park than I ever would have guessed.

Eddie Edwards Storms the Ring on a RAMPAGE | IMPACT! Highlights July 19, 2018

Knockouts Title: Su Yung(c) vs. Madison Rayne

You can call this one another surprise as Rayne has done far better with the one more run story than I ever would have expected. The problem though is they’ve built her up to the point where she almost has to win the title to validate going over so many others but I don’t think they want to (or should) take the title off of Yung, even if it’s just for a short reign for…well for Rayne.

I’m going to go with Yung retaining through some shenanigans, which is the best way possible to keep things from getting in trouble. Yung can feud with Allie or someone else for the title going forward, though giving it to Rayne and having her drop it to Blanchard isn’t the worst idea in the world either. I’ll stick with Yung retaining though, as it makes more sense at the moment.

Madison Rayne is Haunted & Stalked by Su Yung | IMPACT! Highlights July 12, 2018

Fenix vs. Johnny Impact vs. Rich Swann vs. Taiji Ishimori

It should be noted that Swann suffered a concussion on Thursday and may not be able to work the show. That being said, this has the potential to be a heck of a match. Just throwing a bunch of people who can fly around out there is an idea that usually works and that’s what we’re getting here. Having Impact back is a big positive as well as he has the star power to lend some more credibility to a match like this.

In what isn’t likely to happen, I’ll take Fenix to win. He and his brother are two of the biggest stars Impact has at the moment and having him pin Ishimori, who is cool but not exactly around very often, would be a good way to give him a boost. If you have someone as popular as Fenix at the moment it would make sense to push the heck out of him and a win here would help do that.

Rich Swann vs Fenix | IMPACT! Highlights July 5, 2018

X-Division Title: Matt Sydal(c) vs. Brian Cage

It’s another title match where they seem to have booked themselves into a bit of a corner. Cage is on fire at the moment and seems ready to be pushed to the moon. The problem is the X-Division Title isn’t on the way to the moon, nor is having him drop it eventually or having Sydal escape with the title through more shenanigans. That’s a problem here and I’m not sure how they’re going to get out of it.

My guess is they’ll solve it by giving Cage the title and then moving on from there. It’s no secret that Cage is seemingly being fast tracked for the main event scene and this would be a good way to start that process. I mean, a better way would have been to sidestep the X-Division in general and move on to the main event scene but it’s a bit late for that. Having a monster like Cage as champion could be interesting for a change so this seems like the right way, or at least the least painful way, to go.

Matt Sydal will Live in the Moment vs Brian Cage SUNDAY at Slammiversary XVI | In My Own Words

LAX vs. OGz

Now this is the one that I’ve been wanting to see as Impact FINALLY has a hot story to run on. It’s a retelling of the Midnight Express vs. Midnight Express feud from 1988 and that’s not the worst place in the world to be. If they can do something with the kind of energy they potentially have here, this could be a heck of a match that easily steals the show. At worst, it should at least be pretty good.

As for winners, you almost have to go with LAX, but it entirely depends on how long Homicide and Hernandez are sticking around. If they’re staying then they should win, but if this is a one off appearance then LAX wins easily. Either way, it should be a heck of a brawl and King vs. Konnan on the floor should be interesting as well. The street fight idea is the right call here and they could easily steal the show.

Santana Plans on Bringing the PAIN to Homicide & Hernandez at Slammiversary XVI | In My Own Words

Impact Wrestling World Title: Austin Aries(c) vs. Moose

This has been a very odd build as Moose and Aries have only been in the ring together once in recent weeks. The idea has been to have Moose off training for the biggest match of his life, which is a fine way to write off what was likely a case of Moose not being available for most of the tapings. The match is as interesting as it can be, but Impact has a long history of not having the best main event builds in the world.

I’ll go with Aries retaining here, as the idea has been that Moose has to win the title at some point in the year. There’s a lot of time left in the year for him to pull that off and Aries fighting off some of the other big stars of the promotion is an interesting concept. Also I’m not sure if they would want to switch the title again so soon after having done the Pentagon reign at the last pay per view.

The Mind Games Between Austin Aries & Moose EXPLODE Ahead of SLAMMIVERSARY Main Event THIS SUNDAY!

Overall Thoughts

I’m excited. This show looks very good on paper with nothing that feels like filler or a bad match. Don Callis has turned this promotion around (though that’s been said before to less than stellar long term results) and for now, they have a pay per view that I want to see. This is a near miracle for them and if they can pull off a great show, I’m certainly not going to be complaining for once.

Thomas Hall has been a wrestling fan for over thirty years and has seen over 50,000 wrestling matches. He has also been a wrestling reviewer since 2009 with over 5,000 full shows covered. You can find his work at, or check out his Amazon author page with 27 wrestling books. His latest book is the NXT: The Full Sail Years Volume III: From Dallas To New Orleans.

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