Impact Wrestling is celebrating 20 years of existence, and since its inception in 2002 as TNA, the promotion has made a name for itself in pro wrestling…a name that many fans respect and appreciate, as they should.
So many stars have made their way through that promotion—so many to name—and currently, the promotion is enjoying quite a time in the industry when a lot of eyes are on the top two promotions in the industry—WWE and AEW. Impact of course benefited as well.
The ‘Forbidden Door’ was something that they clearly benefited from…Kenny Omega bringing ratings to the company with his involvement as Champion, and really, Impact Wrestling can stand on their own as well. They have a fan base and a loyal one at that, but the boost was a much needed one.
They still benefit from the open door concept with the likes of NJPW, as can be seen with The Bullet Club running wild in the promotion, but the deal with AEW seems to have been done away with for now.
I guess what I’m trying to make clear here is: We love Impact Wrestling and I’m happy they’re still around and thriving. This doesn’t change the fact that I’d love to see some of its epic stars on perhaps a grander stage, like say AEW specifically.
I’d consider Impact Wrestling the 3rd greatest or rather more popular promotion in the industry, although that’s arguable around the world, at least with NJPW in Japan, but at least in North America—the States and Canada—NWA in its new format 5th behind NJPW, but that still doesn’t change the fact that seeing some of its brighter stars in AEW would be something incredible to behold, and hopefully soon.
8. Jake Something
The 28 year old Jake Something started his pro wrestling journey in 2010. Since that time, he has worked extensively on the independent circuit, working in IPW, NWA and of course in ROH where he was trained. At Impact Wrestling he has shown a dominant in-ring style and a penchant for story-telling…one that would fit in well over at AEW.
7. James Storm
So many legends have shown up in AEW from WWE, but what about the TNA/Impact legends like this one? The man is prolific…1000 matches to his name at Impact, with each one being even more spectacular than the next. Perhaps he is in the twilight of an epic career, but what an end it would be to finish it in AEW.
6. Josh Alexander
Not much needs to be said about this man that already hasn’t. He is a technician in that ring. His matches call to mind the sturdy balance and pace in the ring of legends like Kurt Angle, Chris Benoit and even Dean Malenko, and man, if you look at his recent promo in the ring with Scott D’Amore, man can he tell a story too.
His contract with Impact has expired, and his current work visa is in peril right now, so hopefully this can come to fruition once that gets resolved. Can you imagine a match between this man and Bryan Danielson? And that’s just the tip of the iceberg, friends.
5. Tasha Steelz
A phenomenal talent in the ring and on the microphone, this woman has been through it and back—she’s paid her dues thus far. She tells a great story and physically, she backs up all of her threats. She started in the biz back in 2016, but has collected quite a few accolades and accomplishments for her resume…a resume that Tony Khan would do good to look over.
4. Ace Austin
2015 is when he started his wrestling journey and as surprising as it may sound, this young man was trained by the legendary Wild Samoans—Sika (father to Roman Reigns), and Afa (Roman’s uncle). Austin has made some impressive stops in the industry, but it has been at Impact where he has shined the most.
His matches are physical and his high-flying yet powerful moves calls to mind the legendary Brian Pillman. He’d be a sure star in the realm of AEW…perhaps even in a match against Brian Pillman Jr.
3. Speedball Mike Bailey
From Laval, Quebec, Canada (a city just north of Montreal, Quebec), this man is king of the Montreal Wrestling scene. He wrestles extensively for IWS in Montreal as well as Impact, and even trains younger stars at the IWS dojo; he is also still their current champ. (As I write this, I am literally 4 blocks away from the dojo).
The events the promotion put on are high octane and sure to please. Many have stopped through, including Brodie Lee, 2point0 and even Rey Mysterio and John Morrison.
Bailey recently started with Impact and although he hasn’t settled into a storyline yet, I see him in AEW for sure, and hopefully soon. Heck…maybe he and Daniel Garcia can pick up where they left off….
2. Rohit Raju
Okay, so Rohit left the company in January of this year, but I still consider him a star I would love to see in AEW. He is 41 and started in the biz back in 2008 and has racked in many impressive moments on the indie circuit and at Impact. He is in phenomenal shape and after all he’s done in the industry. He deserves a legitimate run in AEW…maybe where he can feud with real life friend, Ethan Page, or join in on the fun alongside him and Scorpio Sky. Either works for me; he’s an epic talent.
1. Deonna Purrazzo
The Virtuosa has collected many belts in her recent history…3 main ones to be exact: the AAA Reina de Reinas Championship, which she still holds, the ROH Women’s Championship, which she also still holds, and the Impact Knockouts Championship, which she held twice…and this was all after her ill-fated run in WWE.
She was an Impact star before going to WWE, but since returning, she has not only turned a few heads, but has made well…quite the impact, pardon the pun. Seeing her on the AEW platform in matches against Britt Baker, Jamie Hayter, Thunder Rosa and so many others is an extremely attractive possibility, dare I say it. Maybe she and Skye Blue can have another physical match like they had at the Generation Championship Wrestling: Diamond Cup event from a little while back where she can finally exact her revenge