IMPACT Hard to Kill: Mickie James wins Texas Death Match, Moose retains

John Siino reviews IMPACT's Hard to Kill headlined by a Texas Death Match for the Knockouts title, and Moose vs Matt Cardona vs W. Morrissey.

Photo Courtesy: IMPACT Wrestling

IMPACT Wrestling Hard to Kill 2022

January 8th, 2022

By: John Siino

The Factory in Deep Ellum – Dallas, TX

Commentary: Tom Hannifan & D’Lo Brown

Countdown to Hard to Kill Pre-Show

Jake Something def. Madman Fulton by pinfall at 5:25 with the Black Hole Slam

Mike Bailey def. Ace Austin, Laredo Kid & Chris Bey by pinning Austin at 8:09 with the Ultima Weapon

Knockouts Ultimate X Match: Chelsea Green vs. Tasha Steelz vs. Lady Frost vs. Jordynne Grace vs. Alisha vs. Rosemary

Alisha is a late replacement for Rachael Ellering in this first-ever Knockouts X Division match where the winner becomes #1 Contenders for the Knockouts Championship. The match starts with all six ladies soaking in the moment as the crowd starts chanting ‘This is Awesome’. Grace, Steelz, and Rosemary right away start climbing to try and get the hanging X before Chelsea takes Alisha down with a blockbuster and goes up herself. Grace dumps Steelz to the outside as her and Rosemary as the last two women standing in the ring at the moment, as Savannah Evans makes her way down to the ring to assist Steelz. Havok makes her way down to the ring also and puts Rosemary on her shoulders but gets dropkicked right off by Chelsea. Chelsea and Alisha start scaling the beam and both dive onto the other girls on the floor. Lady Frost herself dives onto them right after. Grace starts hanging on the cable but gets taken down by Steelz, who hits an assisted Destroyer with the help of Chelsea. Chelsea makes her way to the top next and starts sprinting on the cable before crashing down on Steelz. Rosemary and Chelsea start climbing, but Alisha comes in with Kendra, her kendo stick, and takes them out. Alisha starts shimmying on the cable, but Rosemary spears her off with Alisha landing face first. Tasha starts shimmying next, with Grace right behind her, who ends up falling down in a sit-out powerbomb with Steelz both crashing down. Frost climbs up the beam just to hit a moonsault on the women on the floor. Grace and Tasha start shimmying over to the X, as Chelsea quickly follows them before Grace falls down. Steelz and Chelsea start fighting over it, with Tasha eventually falling with it to win the match.

Winner: Tasha Steelz at 9:14, to become #1 Contenders for the Knockouts Championship

Not Making it to the Royal Rumble

We get a preview of The Free Fall movie, which is sponsoring the show, as well as promos from Mickie James and Deonna Purrazzo, as they say, that match is main eventing tonight. Deonna says she has a plan A and plan B tonight, but Gail Kim comes in and says if Matthew Rehwoldt gets involved, he’s fired and Deonna will lose the match as Deonna starts screaming that Mickie won’t make it to the Royal Rumble.

IMPACT X-Division Championship: Trey Miguel (c) vs. Steve Maclin

As Trey Miguel makes his entrance, he has two hooded men next to them that Hannifan questions if those were some ‘Rascalz’. Maclin dives onto Miguel before the match starts as they start brawling, with Miguel running in and out to hit a DDT to Maclin on the outside. The match finally starts, with the stipulation being that if Maclin loses, he won’t get another X-Division title match as long as Miguel is champion. They fight into the corner, until Miguel dives onto Maclin, landing onto a fan in the crowd, that seems to be shaken up but fine. They fight a bit more, with Maclin attacking Miguel on the barricade before throwing him back inside where he hits a uranage for a two count. Maclin continues to target the back including a backbreaker for another two. They take it to the outside, where Maclin takes out Miguel with an elbow to the back, off the apron, before going over to Hannifan and flipping him off. Miguel starts to fight back and hits a double stomp to the chest before hitting a flat liner to Maclin onto the apron. Miguel goes to the middle rope, trying a Meteora but gets stopped by Maclin who hits a devastating-looking Crosshairs to Miguel, trapping them both in the ropes, before eventually dropping to the outside. Maclin slowly rolls Miguel back inside where he gets a two count but follows that with repeated elbows to the head of Miguel, goes for Mayhem for All, but Miguel counters out and hits the Lighting Spiral for a two count. Miguel goes to the top for the Meteora, but Maclin knocks him off as they fight on the apron. Miguel takes Maclin down with a knee strike, before hitting a Meteora to Maclin off the apron, falling to the outside where Maclin’s head hits the barricade. Miguel tosses Maclin back inside where he hits another Meteora, but remarkably Maclin kicks out at two. Maclin gets on his knees, but Miguel keeps attacking him and hits a brainbuster, followed by another Meteora and finally gets the pin and the win.

Winner: Trey Miguel by pinfall at 12:54, to retain

The Unprofessionals

We go Gia Miller backstage with The Influence who say The IInspiration were being unprofessional and didn’t show to work. Madison Rayne says it’s nothing like Tenille Dashwood when she took a month off for a photoshoot, as Tenille questions why one of them couldn’t just show up and defend the titles as it’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Madison says they are still going to have the match and become Knockouts Tag Team Championship, but that won’t happen until January 27th in Ft. Lauderdale. Kaleb with a K starts showing them pictures he recently took of The Influence, as Gia tries to look, she gets pushed away, and as The Influence walks off.

ROH World Championship: Jonathan Gresham (c) vs. Chris Sabin

Ian Riccaboni joins Tom Hannifan and D’Lo Brown on commentary as Bobby Cruise makes the introduction to this Ring of Honor match that is now under Pure Rules. Riccaboni mentions that if Sabin wins the ROH World Title, he will fulfill all the world title obligations that Gresham has lined up. They start the match slow with lock-ups and takedowns as the crowd seems 50/50. Gresham starts working on the arm and leg of Sabin but stretches Sabin’s ankle back into a trapped pin for a two before going right after his arm again. Sabin comes back by kicking Gresham off the apron to the outside. They head back inside, where Gresham hits a hurricanrana, followed by a couple of pin attempts before Sabin hits a rotating DDT for a two count. Sabin comes back with a spinning neckbreaker off the ropes, but Gresham puts his foot on the rope on the pin attempt, using his first of three rope breaks. Gresham grabs Sabin on a kick attempt and throws him across the ring with a dragon screw, followed by a moonsault off the middle rope before landing multiple strikes to Sabin, into a cross face. After a bit of a struggle, Sabin finally reaches the rope to use his first rope break. Gresham stomps Sabin’s foot and puts him in the Octopus hold while hammering down fists to the back of Sabin’s head, but Sabin escapes out and hits the Cradle Shock. As Sabin goes for the pin, Brian Hebner catches Gresham’s foot under the rope and continues the match as Gresham uses his second rope break. They go on a chop exchange as the crowd amps up and stands for them, ending with a big smack from Sabin, Enziguri from Gresham, and a kick from Sabin followed by another Cradle Shock attempt that turns into a couple of pin attempts until Gresham finally bridges back for the pin.

Winner: Jonathan Gresham by pinfall at 12:39, to retain

The Wrong Side of the Street

Gia Miller is backstage with Tasha Steelz and Savannah Evans where she congratulates Tasha on winning the Ultimate X match and getting a title opportunity. Tasha says she made history tonight and whether it’s Mickie James or Deonna Purrazzo they have a date on the wrong side of the street with Tasha Steelz.

Jonah vs. Josh Alexander

The crowd is 50/50 as these two men stare each other down before Alexander starts with a kick to the face that doesn’t faze Jonah. Alexander takes Jonah to the corner with strikes, followed by a dropkick off the second rope, before dodging a senton from Jonah. Alexander tries to go for the ankle lock but gets thrown off to the outside where Jonah joins him as they fight on the outside. They start fighting on the apron, with Jonah getting his ankle trapped up on the bottom rope as Alexander starts attacking it before hitting a running cross-body knocking Jonah off the apron to the outside. They continue fighting on the outside where Jonah suplexes Alexander on the apron before they go inside where Jonah press slams Alexander right onto the top rope. Alexander goes for a C4 Spike attempt, but Jonah reverses out, dropping Alexander onto the ropes and gets a two-count. Alexander tries to fight his way up, but Jonah keeps him down until he puts him into a gut wrench/torture rack submission. Alexander elbows his way out, goes to take Jonah down, failing, and getting knocked down with a hard forearm. This seems to anger Alexander who gets up and challenges Jonah to hit him, which he does and viciously knocks Alexander down. Alexander comes right back as Jonah is celebrating and starts kicking at the ankle of Jonah. Alexander hits a couple of clotheslines until finally clotheslining Jonah to the outside. They end up fighting into the crowd where Jonah sits down on one of the seats. This prompts Alexander to jump off the top rope into Jonah who was still over on the seats. Jonah slowly gets back into the ring at the nine-count, as Alexander starts hyping himself up and the crowd by pounding onto the mat before going for the C4 Spike, but Jonah’s back body drops him off. Alexander comes back with a knee off the ropes onto the back of the head for a two count. They end up fighting on the top rope, where Jonah hits a big superplex. They slowly make their way up and start trading strikes, chops, and then slaps, until Jonah hits a powerbomb and a clothesline for pin attempts. Jonah hits a brainbuster that busts Alexander wide open, goes to the top rope, but Alexander follows him quickly and puts an ankle lock on with Jonah still on the top rope. Jonah knocks Alexander off and goes for a top rope moonsault, but Alexander dodges and hits a German Suplex followed by a powerbomb but only gets a two. Alexander goes right into the ankle lock, having Jonah in the middle of the ring. Jonah kicks himself off, but Alexander comes back with stomps to the face and applies the ankle lock on again until Jonah submits.

Winner: Josh Alexander by submission at 16:50

Ready for Hardcore War

Gia Miller is backstage with Eddie Edwards, Rich Swann, Willie Mack, Heath, and Rhino where Edwards says they are willing to die tonight if it means winning this match and it’s time to introduce ‘Kenny’ the kendo stick to Dallas, Texas. Swann chimes in that the team they got standing before you are ready to get hardcore. Mack and Rhino are over the top energized as well to close off the promo.

Hardcore War: Violent by Design (Eric Young, Deaner & Joe Doering) & The Good Brothers (Doc Gallows & Karl Anderson) vs. Eddie Edwards, Rich Swann, Willie Mack, Heath & Rhino

The rules for this match are that two men start alone for 3 minutes, every 90 seconds a new man enters from alternating teams. The match cannot end until the final man has entered, after all 8 men have entered the match is won by pinfall or submission and it’s no disqualification. Deaner and Rich Swann are the first two entrants, as Deaner has a trash can and Swann has a steel chair. Swann takes control hitting a rolling thunder before wedging a chair in the corner. Swann goes for a 450, but Deaner dodges and tosses Swann into the steel chair that’s wedged before going to wave his VBD flag before hitting him with a Russian leg sweep with the flag intact. Karl Anderson comes out with a golf club, but Swann goes after him right away, takes the club, and swings right at Anderson’s crotch with it. Swann takes down Deaner, but Anderson takes Swann right down with the tag title. Willie Mack runs out as the next entrant wields an ax handle to help out Swann, before bringing a wooden door into the ring that they prop on two steel chairs. They go to suplex Deaner, but Anderson is able to save them. Mack and Swann are able to knock Anderson out and hit a 3D to Deaner onto the wooden door before Doc Gallows runs out as the next entrant with a steel chair. The heels take control and start throwing trash cans around and using the broken wooden door on Swann. Eddie Edwards is next who comes out with Kenny the Kendo Stick and starts swinging away before hitting a pair of suicide dives on Deaner and the Good Brothers, then grabbing a beer from a fan. Edwards sets up a table on the outside, as Eric Young runs out next and takes out Edwards with trash can lids. As they are all brawling inside and outside, Heath comes out next throwing white powder into Anderson’s face before revealing a lead pipe that he uses on Deaner, who Edwards has trapped in a trash can. Mack goes for a moonsault with the trash can, but nobody is there and lands on the trash can, as Joe Doering comes out without a weapon. Doering is able to powerbomb Mack and Swann off of him in the corner, as the heels start taking control using chains and chairs on everybody as the ring looks a mess. Rhino comes out as the last entrant with a steel chain and starts swinging away on everybody. Rhino continues inside the ring, as Heath and Edwards are shown to be busted wide open. Gallows and Young get up and are busted open as well as all 10 men square off before going on the attack on each other inside and then outside of the ring. Young and Edwards end up in the ring and start trading trash can lid shots, before Edwards takes Young down with one. Edwards then grabs the kendo stick and swings away, taking down all the heels breaking the stick in the process. Edwards grabs another Kendo stick and lights it on fire and smacks Gallows with it. Young comes back by hitting Edwards with a piledriver through the table on the outside. Mack and Swann go and grab a wooden board covered in barbed wire that they toss inside. Doering ends up grabbing Swann and putting him through the barbed wire wooden board with a Death Valley Driver. All men start attacking each other, until Heath grabs a Dallas Cowboys helmet and hits Anderson with it, followed by a gore from Rhino, that Heath goes and gets the pin after for the win.

Winners: Heath, Rhino, Eddie Edwards, Rich Swann & Willie Mack by pinfall at 23:23

ROH Invasion

After the match, Mike Bennett & Matt Taven come out after the match and start attacking the babyfaces. Vincent joins in on the attack, followed by PCO as we have a full-blown ROH invasion. Maria Kanellis joins them in the ring as they stand tall.

Gia Miller tries to get a word with Scott D’Amore who says he has no idea what is going on and finds out just when everybody else did and it’s time for him to make a phone call to Baltimore.

IMPACT World Championship: Moose (c) vs. W. Morrissey vs. Matt Cardona

They go at it right at the bell with Cardona diving onto Morrissey and Moose on the outside before all three started brawling on the outside, with Moose whipping Cardona hard into the barricade. Moose hits a powerbomb to Cardona onto the apron, followed by Morrissey doing the same to Moose. They all start going at it inside with Moose hitting Go to Hell on Morrissey, but Cardona breaks it up and hits the Reboot to both Moose and Morrissey in their corners. Morrissey goes to hit a fall-away slam on Cardona, as Moose joins in and powerbombs Morrissey in the process. They head out towards the entrance, as Chelsea Green makes her way out, flipping off Moose before diving on him. As Cardona and Moose head towards the ring, Morrissey dives onto them. Cardona is able to knock Morrissey out of the ring with double knees as he and Moose start exchanging forearms. Moose runs up the top rope but gets pushed off and falls hard onto a table on the outside but looks to have gotten more off the floor than the table. A fan throws his prosthetic leg into the ring, as Morrissey uses it on Cardona. Cardona comes right back with Radio Silence, but only gets a two count, Morrissey comes back with a big chokeslam and gets a two count as well, before blowing kisses to Chelsea on the outside. Cardona comes back with another Radio Silence, but Moose drags the referee to the outside, breaking the count. Moose and Cardona go at it, as Cardona dodges the lights-out spear from Moose, who connects with the referee. Cardona hits Radio Silence, as Morrissey tosses him out, hits a powerbomb on Moose getting the three count but the referee is still knocked out on the outside. Morrissey goes and grabs a bunch of chairs from under the ring and tosses them inside. Morrissey goes for another powerbomb, but Moose stops him with a low blow and smacks him in the back with a couple of chair shots. Cardona comes in with a chair of his own and starts attacking Moose and Morrissey with it, but Moose kicks Cardona right in the crotch to stop him. As Moose sets up another chair shot, Chelsea runs in and stops him only to get pushed off by Moose. Cardona almost hits Chelsea with a chair again but stops short, then Moose stops short as well. Cardona goes for a roll-up, as another referee goes for the count and Moose kicks out. Moose picks up Cardona and powerbombs him onto the referee, then hits Cardona with the Lights Out Spear as the original referee comes in and makes the pin.

Winner: Moose by pinfall at 15:58, to retain

Rebellion

We get a promo for IMPACT Wrestling’s next big pay-per-view; Rebellion in Poughkeepsie, New York on April 23rd.

IMPACT Knockouts Championship Texas Death Match: Mickie James (c) vs. Deonna Purrazzo

Rules here are after the pinfall, if you can’t stand for a ten count, you lose the match as James gets a pinfall right away, but Deonna easily gets away. Tom Hannifan and D’Lo mention Mickie’s upcoming WWE Royal Rumble appearance as they have been plugging that away all night. Deonna makes Mickie tap out to Venus De Milo, but the match continues as current ROH Women’s Champion Rok-C is seen sitting in the crowd. Mickie and Deonna start tossing a sleuth of chairs into the ring before Deonna goes to grab a table but gets kicked off by Mickie. Mickie and Deonna start fighting on the outside, as Mickie finds the golf club from the Hardcore War to use on Deonna before placing Deonna on a wheelbarrow. They start fighting right in front of Rok-C who raises her ROH title in front of Deonna ahead of their upcoming match. They take it to the top of the ramp, where Deonna hits Mickie with a suplex then drives a flight case into Mickie for a three-count that busts Mickie open on her forehead. They make their way back to the ring, where Mickie dodges a chair shot attempt and puts on a single Crab as Deonna grabs the rope before getting drop kicked off the apron. They end up bringing the table into the ring, where Deonna starts slamming Mickie into it before going and grabbing a bag of thumbtacks and spreading them all over the ring. Mickie tries to hit a DDT on Deonna but gets stopped and knocked down onto the thumbtacks that are all over her back. Deonna grabs Mickie’s chaps ring gear that she had taken off and starts choking her out with it as Mickie taps out and falls to the outside. Brian Hebner starts counting her out, but Mickie gets up only for Deonna to dive onto her. Mickie grabs a guitar that says Hardcore Country from under the ring, but Deonna stops her before she can use it, tosses her back inside, and smacks her knee over and over with a steel chair. Deonna puts Mickie’s knee inside the chair, goes to the top, but Mickie gets out and smacks Deonna in the head with the chair knocking her off to outside where she hits her with a Thesz Press for the pin. Matthew Rehwoldt comes out to help Deonna up, who is now busted open as well, as Mickie takes them both out with another dive off the top rope. Mickie places Deonna onto the table in the ring, climbs to the top, but Deonna stops her, hitting the Queen’s Gambit through the table, and getting the three count. Deonna seemed to get the brunt of that one, as Mickie gets up at nine. They start fighting over a chair, with Deonna falling into the thumbtacks. Mickie goes to the guitar, but Deonna stops her by grabbing her down low and gets kicked off. Rehwoldt comes into the ring and gets the guitar shot instead, Mickie dodges Deonna who gets the chick kick while Deonna has the chair to the face and the Mick-DT for the pinfall. As Deonna is fighting to get up, Mickie puts the broken table on her to prevent it as Hebner makes the ten count and Mickie wins.

Winner: Mickie James by pinfall at 19:43, to retain

Siino Vision: I found this to be a very strong show, and every match delivered. Only low points were the Hardcore War and the IMPACT World Championship, but even those were better than I expected them to be. There was a lot of blood and scary spots throughout the night, so I hope everybody is okay and there weren’t any major injuries. Hearing Tom Hannifan (Phillips) again sure made this show sound more legitimate, and the WWE and Royal Rumble references throughout the night made this a surreal experience. Will be hard for IMPACT to top this already at the start of the year, but hopefully they will get enough buzz, with the WWE and ROH involvement coming out of the show to maintain some traction.

About John Siino 138 Articles
New York native and reporter at POST Wrestling. He is also Associate Producer and Social Media Director at upNXT, and the host of the 'Shot in the Dark' podcast.