IMPACT Wrestling’s fourth-annual Rebellion event goes down this Saturday (23 April) from the Mid Hudson Civic Center in Poughkeepsie, New York, with a stacked nine-match card, topped off with Moose defending the IMPACT World Championship against Josh Alexander. Elsewhere, Honor No More’s leader Eddie Edwards battles Jonathan Gresham in non-title action, JONAH faces Tomohiro Ishii, and Violent By Design contend seven other teams for their World Tag Team Championships.
As has become expected with IMPACT Wrestling’s pay-per-views under the Scott D’Amore (and formerly Don Callis) regime, huge surprises are sure to be in store. Rebellion has proven to be one of the most unpredictable nights on the IMPACT calendar, with past years providing Kenny Omega becoming IMPACT World Champion, the epic Full Metal Mayhem match between Ortiz and Santana, and The Lucha Bros, and Gail Kim’s official retirement match vs. Tessa Blanchard.
The 2022 event will be no different, all going well. What, exactly, should be expected come 23 April?
Sami Callihan Returns
Prior to his injury, Sami Callihan had been one of IMPACT Wrestling’s top names, a position he’d been in ever since debuting at the 2017 Bound For Glory pay-per-view. ‘The Draw’ was just that; a legitimate draw. IMPACT Wrestling fans cared deeply about everything Callihan was involved in because he put everything into every story, every program, and every rivalry. Until his 2021 babyface turn, Sami was the perfect heel because you legitimately despised him.
When it was reported that the former World Champion had broken his ankle last September, it left a massive gap in the promotion. Josh Alexander and Moose have carried the company in his absence, but no one has done anything that’s come close to matching the aura of Sami Callihan. His injury was reported to keep him out of action until the spring of 2022, which is well underway. In other words, expect Sami back any time soon.
Saving his return to the IMPACT Zone for a key moment would be the ideal situation. When he left off, he was feuding with Moose and W. Morrissey. Morrissey isn’t currently scheduled for the Rebellion card, though if he does wrestle, it’ll likely be against Matt Cardona and/or Brian Myers; nothing that concerns the former Solomon Crowe. If Sami’s to return at Rebellion, it’ll likely come at the tail-end of the pay-per-view following Moose and Josh Alexander’s IMPACT World Championship match. It’s the perfect opportunity for Callihan to be inserted back into the fold, exactly where he left off.
Eddie Edwards Pins Jonathan Gresham Clean
One of Rebellion’s few non-title bouts will see Eddie Edwards take on Jonathan Gresham, who currently holds the Ring Of Honor World Championship. The surprise for this could be as simple as ‘The Octopus’ putting said championship on the line, as he’s already done so in IMPACT, but instead, he should be pinned, clean, by the former multi-time IMPACT World Champion.
When Honor No More initially invaded IMPACT at the Hard To Kill pay-per-view in January, they remained major players within IMPACT Wrestling, a situation they were in right through to the unveiling of Eddie Edwards as their leader at March’s Sacrifice event. Since then, however, the group of ex-ROH stars haven’t done much of note. Eddie, for example, was defeated at Multiverse of Matches by Tomohiro Ishii as if he was just another guy on the roster. This needs to change moving forward.
For Honor No More to be taken seriously once more, they need to gain a major win. Defeating Gresham – although technically signed to All Elite Wrestling and no official affiliation to IMPACT Wrestling – counts as such a thing, regardless of if the ROH World Championship is defended or not. It would set Eddie on the path towards challenging for the World Championship again, which would absolutely put Honor No More back into the conversation.
Johnny IMPACT Helps Taya Valkyrie Win
Multiverse of Matches, IMPACT Wrestling’s premier event over WrestleMania weekend, bear witness to the shock IMPACT return of Taya Valkyrie. The former Franky Monet, who’d been released from WWE in November 2021, confronted Deonna Purrazzo following ‘The Virtuosa’ defeating Faby Apache as part of her ongoing Champ Champ Challenge, retaining the Lucha Libre AAA Worldwide Reina de Reinas Championship.
Valkyrie has since been confirmed as Deonna’s adversary for the Rebellion pay-per-view, marking her first outing in an IMPACT ring since the 2021 Hard To Kill pay-per-view. Ironically enough, it was Deonna Purrazzo who wrestled ‘La Wera Loca’ at the January 2021 event. It’s a full-circle moment, really, but it would be made all the sweeter if Taya were able to become a four-time Reina de Reinas Champion, which would tie her with the aforementioned Faby Apache for most reigns as champion.
In order to do so, Valkyrie should be assisted by a returning Johnny IMPACT. John Morrison, Johnny Mundo, Johnny Superstar, Johnny Nitro, whatever you want to call him, he’s one of the top free agents at the moment, having wrestled just seven matches since his own November release from WWE. He’s not been seen in IMPACT since losing to Rich Swann at Slammiversary 2019, but an emphatic return during Rebellion, reuniting in the company with his wife, would put him back on the map instantaneously.
The HitMakerZ Debut
One of the more intriguing contests signed for Rebellion surrounds the IMPACT World Tag Team Championships. Currently held by the Violent By Design trio of Eric Young, Joe Doering, and Deaner, the titles are due to be defended in an eight-team Elimination Challenge, with the seven challenging teams supposedly being the lumberjacks of a recent match between VBD and The Good Brothers.
Those teams were The Motor City Machine Guns, Decay’s Crazzy Steve and Black Taurus, Rich Swann and Willie Mack, Heath and Rhino, Bullet Club’s Jay White and Chris Bey, and Honor No More’s Matt Taven and Mike Bennett, which leaves, officially, one spot open. However, both Chris Sabin and Jay White are involved in a three-way with Steve Maclin, which would theoretically rule both of those duos out, leaving an additional two spots, one of which will presumably be filled by The Good Brothers.
That IMPACT is yet to release a graphic with all eight confirmed teams indicates that, perhaps, there will be a surprise or two, one of which could be The HitMakerZ. The former Top Dolla noted to Sportskeeda that the trio had “good conversations” with IMPACT officials over WrestleMania weekend, so a Rebellion appearance is entirely plausible. AJ Francis and Tehuti Miles, flanked by Briana Brandy, would be a superb surprise for the match, regardless of if they walk away as World Tag Team Champions.
Slammiversary: Our World Changes Again…Again
For the past two years, the tagline for IMPACT Wrestling’s summer pay-per-view Slammiversary has been “Our World Changes” (“Our World Changes Again” for 2021’s instalment), as the Anthem-helmed promotion took advantage of WWE’s mass releases to boost their own product. This has seen the IMPACT debuts and returns of Mickie James, Eric Young, The Good Brothers, and countless others, as well as non-WWE-related moments, such as Jay White’s shock debut last July.
Slammiversary 2022 should follow a similar path. The event hasn’t yet been confirmed, but a 16/17 July date seems most applicable. How, exactly, they change their world again remains to be seen, but following the same mantra as July 2020 and 2021 wouldn’t exactly be a bad thing. A number of IMPACT wrestlers have departed the company this year, including Jake Something, Rohit Raju, and Brandi Lauren, so there’s space on the roster to justify this.
A vignette teasing as such should air during Rebellion, displaying a date and location for the event. Owing to IMPACT’s twentieth anniversary this summer, this would be the ideal scenario to celebrate accordingly.
IMPACT Wrestling Rebellion goes down on Saturday, 8 January 2022. IMPACT Wrestling programming can be found on IMPACT Plus, their official YouTube channel if you’re an Ultimate Insider, and FITE TV. Stay up to date with all the IMPACT ongoings via their Twitter page.