IMPACT WRESTLING ONE NIGHT ONLY CALI COMBAT RESULTS: The Reemergence of Winter(ish) vs Lucha Royalty and Another First Time Televised Clash (May, 12th 2018)

Welcome all to the IMPACT Wrestling One Night Only Pay Per View report for the month of May. This month brings with it Cali Combat, a PPV in alignment with Big Time Wrestling, and with it comes two Knockouts Matches. The Recently Returned Katarina takes on Taya Valkyrie for the first time as a part of IMPACT, and the “Warrior Princess” Samara takes on the woman who continues her reputation as a fighting champion, Allie, and her Knockouts Title is on the line.

The first sees the Taya vs Katarina match that i thought wouldn’t have made the show because of it not being featured in the PPV hype promo(s) but nonetheless it luckily happened. Katarina is out first, to the theme she used during her days as Winter mysteriously, with Lucha Royalty herself, Taya Valkyrie, gracing the crowd with her presence secondly.

Katarina locks Taya in a waistlock to start the match, though Taya one ups her with a reversal. Taya powers Katarina to the mat, rolling out of a hold set up after only to be caught by Katarina’s key-lock. Taya one ups Katarina again, this time by tripping her. Taya stretches the legs of Katarina while roughing up the back of her left shoulder, then transitioning to a front facelock. Katarina performs a reversal into a side headlock, but soon has her arm bent behind her back by Taya. Katarina rolls over and gets herself upright, attempting a hammerlock but only gets knocked to the mat instead. Taya sends Katarina head first into a nearby turnbuckle, stomping her against it before irish whipping her towards the opposite corner. Katarina gets back elbowed in the same corner by Taya, but recovers quickly and follows Taya as she maneuvers back to the earlier corner, catching up with her and surprising her with her own corner elbow. The two women repeat the sequence again and again until Katarina evades the further continuation, meeting Taya in the rings center instead and executing a flying headscissor. Katarina looks for a possible monkey flip in a nearby corner but gets tilted onto the turnbuckle by Taya. Katarina blocks a single blow from Taya, hooks her and connects with a Tornado DDT. Katarina tries to capitalize over all offense done, including the DDT, with her first pin attempt but only manages to get a near fall on Taya so far.

Katarina delivers forearms and kicks to Taya in an earlier corner upon getting back to her feet, then performs an irish whip to send Taya to an opposite corner. Before she can connect with follow up offense, Taya hits the apron instead, shoulder tackling Katarina between the ropes then connecting with a top rope neckbreaker. Taya returns to the ring, stomping the upper back of Katarina then choking her against a nearby middle rope. Taya also double knees Katarina in the back against the same ropes, and after showcasing her full control over the match, she goes into her first pin attempt of the match and like Kat, she gets a near fall.

Taya whips Katarina, who goes from an octopus hold to a roll up upon running back off the ropes, again getting a near fall in the culmination. Katarina attempts a running crossbody but Taya catches her and takes control again with a fallaway slam. Taya covers Kat once more but again Kat makes an escape at two. Taya ties Katarina up with a side headlock applied to her, with Katarina trying to escape via elbows. Taya takes Katarina by her hair and sends her backward to the mat before she can make a full escape. Taya attempts another pin but once again Katarina kicks out at two. Taya then honors her fellow Canadian Bret “the Hitman” Hart by applying a Sharpshooter to Katarina, though has to eventually release when Katarina pushes her way to the ropes and forces a hand on one. As Taya argues this with the referee, Katarina makes a dash toward her and rolls her up, leading to a near fall result once more.

Taya hits Katarina with an axe handle instantly, before Katarina comes back with a standing jawbreaker and step up enziguiri. flooring both women upon impact. Kat takes control in a forearm exchange upon both getting to their feet, then taking Taya down to the canvas with a clothesline. A Second clothesline follows by Katarina, with her also possibly trying for a Samoan Drop only for Taya to make an easy escape. Taya pushes Kat into a corner though has her attempt at offense knocked off when Kat connects with a boot. Kat heads all the way to the top rope and connects with a missile dropkick from there, covering moments later. Taya kicks out again at two.

Taya chops and knees Katarina out of nowhere, completing the sequence with a cutter. Taya covers Katarina who still remains in the match, escaping at two. Taya whips Katarina to a corner, back elbowing her against it, adding on a clothesline also. Taya looks for double knees only for Katarina to make an escape just as she seems close, and Katarina gets to execute the move Taya made an escape from earlier, the Samoan Drop. An instant pin attempt follows from Katarina, though to her dismay, Lucha Royalty herself has some equal resilience, kicking out at two. Taya hits a neckbreaker that scores the same result in her instant follow up pin. She looks to completely end things with the Road to Valhalla finish set up but rather than Kat hitting the mat, she rolls Taya over and pins the former Reina De Reinas Champion. Katarina wins the match.

Following from the match, we get a promo from Allie’s opponent for later, Samara. Samara says shes been told that someone that looks like her cannot be called the face of the Knockouts Division, but nonetheless she looks to introduce herself, for she is the Warrior Princess, Samara. She switches between languages as she delivers a message to Allie, showing also clearly that shes confident for her Knockouts Title Opportunity.

We also hear from Katarina in the aftermath of her match with Two Time AAA Reina De Reinas Champion, Taya Valkyrie. She thanks the interviewer for mentioning the win she nabbed in her first match with IMPACT Wrestling in many years, eight to be precise. She knows all those years ago, she was a bit of a different person but it looks like she may have come back not just as good as she was back then, but maybe better. She calls facing Taya a challenge, an honor additionally, and going into it she had been told that the best thing she could do was hope to survive, and as seen earlier, she survived and came out a winner, which, in her hopes, bodes well for her future in IMPACT Wrestling.

Later we see Samara be introduced to the Knockouts scene for the first time as she takes on Allie, and not just in any sort of match, but one that puts Allie’s Knockouts Championship title on the line, quite the reward should the woman who is facing Allie for the first time on the IMPACT Scene win. In a pre match promo, Allie has been made aware, whether by herself or others of the heel Samara’s earlier words, and on top of her upcoming defense, she also makes it clear that shes not taking calls off the former on screen love, Braxton Sutter. We then head to the match, and Samara enters first, as noted, being called the Warrior Princess. Per tradition in a championship match, a joyful Allie enters second.

Allie happily showcases her Knockouts Title before battle can begin, but Samara isn’t waiting, clubbing the champion from behind and thus the bell is rung. Samara shows clear great pleasure in beating down on Allie and carries on doing so before sending her head first into a corner turnbuckle. Samara whips Allie into an opposite corner not too long later, but before she can do a follow up attack to the champ in the corner, she escapes. Allie takes advantage, clotheslining Samara against the same corner before taking her out of it. Allie connects then with two low clotheslines, one in the rings center and the second to Samara while shes against the ropes. Allie plonks the head of Samara against a turnbuckle, then returns to the ring, ducking a clothesline attempt by Samara and connecting with a running crossbody which sends Samara down, and in turn, Allie, being atop of her, does her first pin attempt, getting a near fall on her challenger.

Samara appears to beg for mercy as Allie steps towards her in a nearby corner, but its apparent trickery from the hopeful challenger as she soon trips Allie into the same corner. Samara picks Allie up, suplexing her then connecting with an elbow drop for a near fall. Samara continues her momentum post failed pin attempt by choking Allie against a nearby middle rope, then taking her head first into an earlier corners top turnbuckle. Samara chokes her against the same corner with her boot but before she can try anything else, Allie bursts back to life and has Samara up against the corner, unloading with some kicks to her challengers midsection. Samara reverses an irish whip attempt from Allie but Allie tries to maintain momentum regardless, blocking the follow up attack from Samara with an elbow. Allie attempts to double boot Samara, but Samara blocks, swinging both legs in the direction of the nearby ropes. Samara takes Allie by her hair and sends her crashing to the mat. Samara tries to capitalize off of Allie’s crash with a new pin attempt but gets a near fall again.

Samara switches to an aggressive side headlock following her new attempt to pin, though Allie would try to escape with back elbows. Allie tries to make a dash out but is sent to the mat by her hair again. Samara goes to pin once more but again is unable to finish the champ, who makes her escape at two. Samara attacks further and follows right away with a pin, getting a one count this time around. Samara stomps Allie on two occassions before Allie retaliates with a kick by the ropes. Allie knees Samara to retaliate from more offense before having another irish whip attempt reversed. Allie tries to utilize her speed to evade oncoming offense but is face-planted to the mat by Samara instead. Both Samara and Allie get up in time for a forearm exchange, one Allie takes over in. Allie begins her comeback offense, even after taking a knee from Samara. Allie sends Samara into the turnbuckles then dropkicks her in the rear for a near fall.

Allie goes for her superkick but Samara evades and gets to targeting Allie’s legs instead. Allie uses the ropes to escape her hold then hits with the codebreaker. Allie is stunned when Samara kicks out of her follow up pin attempt and looks for her death valley driver, but Samara escapes. Samara does a backbreaker and neckbreaker combo for a near fall, almost three until Allie’s leg is noticed on the ropes, forcing the pin cancellation. A Furious Samara forces Allie off the mat, setting up her next move but gets pushed away by Allie, who connects with her superkick to finish. Allie wins the match, retaining the Knockouts Championship.

(Taya Valkyrie vs Katarina Leigh 39.58 – 52.08)

(Samara Promo 52.09 – 52.42)

(Katarina Leigh Backstage Segment 52.43 – 53.30)

(Samara vs Allie; Knockouts Championship Match 44.33 – 54.48)

Thoughts On:
Katarina/Taya: This was a match i was very excited to see upon hearing about it, also being the first time id ever get to watch these two face each other in an IMPACT Ring. I Really liked Taya’s use of the sharpshooter, honoring just some of the fellow Canadians that utilize it, Natalya, Tyson Kidd, Bret Hart etc. Katarina has not missed a step in ring wise since returning to IMPACT, but obviously due to continuing on in wrestling after her first departure from the company. Its also relieving as well to see her compete as we may not see that for a time while shes working her duties alongside Grado, and interestingly she was using the music utilized while she was Winter here. Sure, it was taped i believe before she resigned with the company, but could it be a hint that behind this nice Katarina, is the person we saw in olden days, that could resurface in the near future? Based on the post match promo and that she didn’t use it while competing on Xplosion during IMPACTs recent tapings (as far as i know) i doubt it but we’ll have to see, especially because no alliance lasts forever. A Surprising win overall too for Katarina, and not the first Taya has taken since losing to Rosemary, but definitely a smart way of executing the pinfall. Taya kept outwitting her, couldn’t put her away despite that, went for the finish and the surprise of Katarina’s counter probably kayfabe overwhelmed. Congrats Kat and welcome back!

Allie/Samara: This was my first time seeing Samara compete and i was definitely impressed, also impressed with the overall match and how back and forth it was. I Also find Samara to be fairly confident with her promos as well and wouldn’t mind her getting a run with IMPACT Wrestling as she has a lot to bring to the division in ring wise and mic wise of course too. But the win for Allie was inevitable in the end, especially as she was destined to carry the title into the IMPACT Wrestling Television tapings for her upcoming angles and because its a One Night Only Pay Per View done in a completely different setting.

– Catherine


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Kayfabe Today

Reviews, opinions and analysis of all things pro wrestling


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