Impact Wrestling Review – November 24, 2022 (Thanksgiving Special) – TJR Wrestling

Thursday was Thanksgiving in the United States, so Impact Wrestling hosted a special that looked back at past Thanksgiving moments at the company.

Tom Hannifan and Matthew Rehwoldt hosted the show. They said that Impact is grateful to have great fans and tonight they would be looking back at some great moments and recaping some of the recent events in Impact Wrestling. It would have been the perfect show to capitalize on Bully Ray’s underhanded actions and continue the momentum of Over Drive on Friday night, but it’s a big holiday in the US so wrestlers will be happy to spend time with their families to celebrate.

I will simply list the games and winners because they have chosen to only show the highlights of the games and not the whole so a rating would not be entirely accurate. There was a lot of bad vibes on the show, but if the games sound like you care, you might want to watch a rerun or find a stream of them.

Match #1: Thanksgiving 2008: Rhino defeated Sheik Abdul Bashir and Alex Shelley in a Turkey Bowl match

Bashir is Shawn Daivari who currently works at WWE as a producer. Rhino pinned Shelley after the gore and earned $25,000. Shelley was forced to don the turkey suit after the match as the loser. Mick Foley came out to face a reluctant Shelley. He said Shelley knew the rules and he had to put on the turkey suit. Shelley took the mic and said if he puts on the turkey suit, none of the ladies in the crowd will be happy. Foley doesn’t care. He overplays Shelley’s abilities, but tells him that if he doesn’t put the suit on, he’ll be fired. Foley counts Shelley to 10. Foley starts counting and Shelley looks at the turkey suit with contempt. Foley reaches 6 and Shelley begins to put the suit on. Foley makes some terrible turkey jokes. The fans start chanting “Turkey,” which I think is what defines this segment at the moment. Shelley completes the turkey suit and ring announcer Jeremy Borash proclaims him Turkey of the Year.

Analysis: They only showed a few minutes of the game but it was more about the turkey condition which was silly but fun for the fans. Foley getting upset about firing Shelley for not wearing a turkey suit was ridiculous.

Several Impact stars and commentators are giving short promos about what they’re grateful for this year.

There is a pre-recorded promo featuring Violent by Design. Deaner asks Young if this is the end after Young lost to Sami Callihan on the show last week. Young says that to get where you want to go, you have to go back to where it all began.

Analysis: That was cryptic, and the story that Young might have been the weak link could play out over the next few weeks.

Rehwoldt and Hannifan rejoined us and overcame the brutality of last week’s match between Sami Callihan and Eric Young. They cut to a Thanksgiving moment from 2007 where Kurt Angle hosted Thanksgiving dinner. It was a pretty lame but fun segment that included a lot of chaos and of course a food fight.

There was a recap of Friday’s Over Drive where Deonna Purrazzo challenged Mickie James after Mickie defeated Taylor Wilde. Mickie was then shown in a pre-taped promo accepting the challenge. The match will take place next week as part of the Last Rodeo.

Analysis: This is a great game for next week. They had some great games last year and I’m sure this will be one of them again.

(commercial break)

Rehwoldt and Hannifan were back in the studio to show the highlights of another Turkey Suit Challenge.

Match #2: Turkey Suit Challenge: Robbie E vs. Grado

Robbie currently stars in NXT as Mr. Stone, but he was an entertaining low-card heel in Impact in the Bro Mans stable. Grado is a Scottish wrestler who was with Impact from 2014 to 2018. The match lasted less than 60 seconds as Grado pulled on Robbie’s tights to reveal his underpants, then Robbie stacked Grado to win the match. Grado enjoyed the turkey suit and danced around while music played.

Analysis: I’m not sure why they picked this one out of all the moments over the years. The match was so short and nothing about it is memorable. I never got into the Grado character.

There were highlights from the World Championship match between Josh Alexander and Over Drive’s Frankie Kazarian. It was an excellent match and I reviewed it here. After the match, Bully Ray challenged Alexander to a World Title match at Hard to Kill, then beat Alexander to death and threatened his wife. Worth checking out if you have the time as I thought it was a dramatic and excellent heel turn and post match angle. They also showed additional footage from after the show where Scott D’Amore confronted Bully at ringside and comically broke his trophy. Rich Swann also came down to protect Alexander and his wife.

Rehwoldt and Hannifan played up the disturbing nature of Bully’s attack. Next week it will be Rich Swann vs. Bully Ray.

The next section with rockstar Spud, who was Drake Maverick on NXT and now writes for Raw. He threw a Thanksgiving dinner in the ring. He played a slimy heel character who allied with EC3 on Impact. Spud invited all the winners of today’s games to the banquet. It ended in a wild brawl when Kurt Angle invited his entourage to take on Bobby Roode and his allies.

There were highlights from the X-Division 6-Way match from the Over Drive pre-show, which Rich Swann won.

Next was a clip from 2017 of Eli Drake (LA Knight in WWE) hosting a ringside Thanksgiving dinner. There was a 10-person tag match where the pinned wrestler had to wear the turkey suit.

Match #3: Chris Adonis, Caleb Konley, Laurel Van Ness, KM and El Hijo Del Fantasma vs. Eddie Edwards, Richard Justice, Allie, Fallah Bahh and Garza Jr. in an Eli Drake Gravy Train Turkey Trot Match

Only about 2 minutes of action was shown. Adonis tried the Adonis lock but Eddie Edwards rolled through and pinned him for the 3 count. After the match, Adonis had to wear the turkey suit.

Back to 2022 when Yuya Uemura and Delirious did a rambling promo that no one could understand. They are now a tag team.

Steve Maclin edited a pre-taped promo saying the young men were being held in Impact. Maclin says Frankie Kazarian stole his title shot. Maclin says that Kazarian has just entered a war where he has no idea what’s in store for him.

Analysis: Kazarian vs Maclin is scheduled for next week. A huge show develops.

Match #4: TNA Turkey Bowl Match: AJ Styles vs. Samoa Joe vs. Chris Sabin

The “main event” of the night was the 2007 Turkey Bowl match. Styles was half of the tag team champions with Tomko. The winner of this match won $25,000 and the loser had to wear the turkey suit. This was the first of those traditional matches that Impact has carried on through the years. Sabin knocked Styles out of the ring with a clothesline early in the match. Joe and Sabin got down to business and traded arm drags. The pace was furious early in the game and the crowd loved it. Styles ran back and completely missed an attack, sending him flying out of the ring again. Sabin kicks Joe that sends him outside. Running the ropes, he knocked out Styles with a suicide jump on the opposite side of the ring. Back from a commercial break, Styles and Sabin faced each other in the ring. Styles cornered Sabin with his right hand. Joe comes back in the ring and stops Styles with a series of jabs until Styles catches Joe in the eye. Joe swept Styles’ legs and then hit an enziguiri in Sabin’s corner. Joe lets the ropes run, but Styles interrupts him with a forearm. Styles dropkicked Sabin from the ring apron. Styles hit Joe with his right hand. Joe fought back with right jabs and then ran the ropes, but Styles graced him with a dropkick. This match went on another commercial break. When they came back, Sabin rolled through a pin attempt on Styles, but Styles caught him and pinned him with the Styles Clash. Joe broke the pin just before the 3 count. Joe picked Styles up and threw him in the corner. Styles jumped off the ropes and looked for a reverse DDT, but Joe caught him and dropped it on his head. Sabin finished the 3-count and then they went into another commercial break. I have to deal with the 2007 and 2022 commercial breaks! Sabin hit Joe with a Tornado DDT and climbed to the top rope. Joe recovered quickly and interrupted him. Sabin fended off Joe and pushed him onto the mat. Styles pushed Joe against Sabin, causing Sabin to get caught on the ropes and Joe pinning him with an enziguiri. Sabin fell outside the ring. Joe clotheslined Styles, who then hit the Pele kick. Styles went for a running clothesline in the corner, but Joe caught him and rammed him to the ground with a uranage. Joe hit the muscle buster to win the match and the $25,000. After the match, Styles refused to wear the turkey suit, so Jim Cornette went to the ring and told him to do it or he was fired. Styles complained that it didn’t fit, but he eventually put it on. The crowd liked that. The segment ended with a duel between the heel trio Styles, Tomko and Angle and Samoa Joe, Scott Hall and Kevin Nash.

Analysis: I won’t rate the match as there was so much commercial breaks but the action shown was great. Styles was here in full heel mode with Kurt Angle and the crowd despised him even though he was majestic in the ring.

Final Thoughts

I was disappointed to see it wasn’t an Impact regular this week, but it’s understandable that it’s Thanksgiving. If I hadn’t reviewed it I would have just skipped it. There were some random selections of included segments. The main event between Joe, Styles and Sabin was the only segment on the show that I really enjoyed. The video segments showing highlights from recent Impact shows were much better and I think they should have used this show to capture more of that and to summarize the current Impact climate for the viewer. Next week looks like this:
* Bully Ray vs. Rich Swann
* Mickie James vs. Deonna Purrazzo
* Steve Maclin versus Frankie Kazarian

That’s 3 Main Event Quality Matches. That will make up for the quality of tonight’s show, so all be forgiven.

I’ll be back next week with a regular review of Impact. Any feedback or comments are welcome. My email address is [email protected] in case anyone wants to get in touch with me and Twitter is @thomok6 also. I’ll be back next week for my regular weekly impact review. Thank you for reading!



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