Special Event: NJPW x IMPACT: Multiverse United
March 30, 2023 5:06 PM - Subscribe

Previously, New Japan Pro Wrestling and All Elite Wrestling teamed up to produce Forbidden Door, the first multi-company large-scale pro-wrestling event since All In. Less than a year later, lightning strikes again as NJPW and Impact Wrestling produce their own crossover event, with titles from both companies defended and stars going in head-to-head dream matches.

In another similarity with Forbidden Door, the card had some shuffling due to injuries, but the expectations are still exciting:

Preshow Kickoff Match: Yuya Uemura vs Gabriel Kidd

4-Man Face-Off: Fred Rosser, Alex Coughlin, Sami Callihan & PCO vs Eddie Edwards, Joe Hendry, Tom Lawlor & JR Kratos
Rosser is f/k/a Darren Young in WWE, but you'd never recognize him now. Several one-on-one and tag team feuds are getting smooshed into this one match, sure to be a chaotic opener.
IMPACT X Division Championship Six Way Scramble: Trey Miguel (c) vs Frankie Kazarian vs Rich Swann vs Kevin Knight vs Clark Connors vs Rocky Romero
If the opener is "chaotic," this will be a madhouse.
IMPACT World Tag Team Championships: Bullet Club's Ace Austin & Chris Bey (c) vs Aussie Open (Kyle Fletcher & Mark Davis) vs Motor City Machine Guns (Alex Shelley & Chris Sabin) vs TMDK (Bad Dude Tito & Shane Haste)
This has implications for several tag titles, since Biz Cliz just defended their titles against TMDK, Aussie Open and MCMG already hold different tag titles in NJPW and so are looking to have double gold.
Jeff Cobb vs Moose
IMPACT Knockouts Championship: Masha Slamovich vs Deonna Purazzo vs Giselle Shaw vs Miyu Yamashita
Masha's filling in for an injured Mickie James. The winner of this four way will advance to either defend later against Jordynne Grace and Mickie James for the Knockouts title, or just against Grace depending on James’ real-life injuries status.
Lio Rush vs KUSHIDA
Rush is filling in for IMPACT World Champion Josh Alexander, who tore his tricep. This match isn't for any title, but both these guys were standout performers at last year's IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship
STRONG Openweight Championship: KENTA (c) vs Minoru Suzuki
KENTA was rude to the crazy Japanese murder grandpa, and now he will pay with blood
Hiroshi Tanahashi vs Mike Bailey
Bailey is stepping in for Will Ospreay, who blew out his shoulder at the New Japan Cup, but taking on "The Ace" is a dream match for him
posted by The Pluto Gangsta (4 comments total)
I won't be able to watch this live, sadly, so my own feelings will get dropped in later. If anyone's watching live, feel free to drop spoilers.
posted by The Pluto Gangsta at 7:06 PM on March 30, 2023

OK, watching it on a three-hour delay as long as my... internet sources hold out. The X Division title match was an enjoyable little scramble that found ways to get most of the competitors fighting together instead of breaking off into little couples, which I appreciate. Miguel retains after letting Connors and Kazarian do most of the work.

Joe Hendry remains delightful introducing his team in the 8-man match. I had forgotten that PCO has now gotten scarier and simultaneously more cartoony with his Frankenstein gimmick, while he also secures victory with a 300-pound moonsault.
posted by The Pluto Gangsta at 8:40 PM on March 30, 2023

Great week Jeff Cobb is having, between a main event against Kenny Omega on Dynamite and now a big hoss victory over Moose featuring many feats of strength. Is Moose the biggest man Cobb ever took on a Tour of the Islands?

I messed up, Deonna wins the four-way but not the title, she only gets into the upcoming Knockouts Championship match, and I really hope Mickie's injury isn't bad because I literally have seen Deonna vs. Jordynne Grace before. If you see Jordynne Grace for the first time, you immediately understand she's either the champ, or she will shortly become the champ. There's not much drama in a one-on-one fight.
posted by The Pluto Gangsta at 9:18 PM on March 30, 2023

Lio Rush vs Kushida was great, as expected. Crazy counters, acrobatics and artistic violence. Weird that Impact and NJPW somehow reunited two stars of WWE's former "205 Live" to have the kind of match they never got to have before.
posted by The Pluto Gangsta at 9:52 PM on March 30, 2023

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