The Curious Case of the AEW and IMPACT Wrestling Partnership - Triple Threat POV | Smark Out Moment

Welcome to another edition of Triple Threat from Smark Out Moment, where three of us get together to discuss three questions based on one big topic going down in the week of professional wrestling.

This week, Dallas Allsopp, Greg Coleman and Bodeen Green discuss the curious case of the AEW and IMPACT Wrestling partnership.

AEW and IMPACT Wrestling have enjoyed a recent relationship that culminated in Kenny Omega defeating Rich Swann for the IMPACT World Championship at Rebellion 2021. However, the partnership has been questioned by many fans, with people speculating on what this means for the future of both companies.

Question 1: Has the partnership between AEW and IMPACT Wrestling been a success so far? Have you been more likely to watch IMPACT as a result of the association with AEW?

ALLSOPP: Considering the pay-per-view numbers that Rebellion 2021 did, it has to be an overwhelming yes to the partnership being a success. The initial buzz was crazy, and it is clear this was down to Kenny Omega. Don Callis is a creative genius, but Omega is the man who really moves the dials. I was already an ardent viewer of IMPACT, but this partnership did at least make me look forward to the shows more than if a partnership hadn’t been made. Overall, it has to be a success due to the buzz, extra eyes on the product, and the clear success with the numbers for Rebellion.

COLEMAN: If we are measuring the success of the partnership by how much it’s done for Kenny Omega, then it’s been an overwhelming success. However, if this is not how you’re measuring success, then no, the partnership has not been successful so far. I can’t think of one IMPACT talent that has benefitted from the partnership, unless you count Gallows and Anderson being on television more. I haven’t been more likely to watch IMPACT as a result of the partnership because I don’t feel IMPACT has been promoted more, or made to seem bigger since the partnership. IMPACT is a promotion that I have said I wanted to get into more, and this would’ve been my sentiment with or without AEW.

GREEN: Without a doubt, the relationship between AEW and IMPACT Wrestling has been a huge success, with one of the biggest reasons for this success being the somewhat shared rosters between the two companies. Whilst it can be disheartening for many fans to see their favourite wrestlers move to a wrestling company that another wrestler is not part of, the IMPACT and AEW partnership relationship has stopped this for a lot of wrestlers. Now we have the potential to see amazing matchups in the future between IMPACT and AEW stars such as the match we saw between Rich Swann and Kenny Omega at Rebellion. This success will only be assisted by the recent firings inside WWE, as names such as Samoa Joe now have the opportunity to return to IMPACT, whilst at the same time having the opportunity to have dream matches with wrestlers that are in AEW. Personally, I am inclined to watch IMPACT more often due to their relationship with AEW, but it will only be for appearances from names that are inside AEW at the moment.

Question 2: Now that Kenny Omega is also the IMPACT World Champion, what is in store next for him? Should he have been successful in defeating Rich Swann for the title?

COLEMAN: What’s next for Kenny Omega is him appearing on AEW with all the belts and not being a regular presence on IMPACT. Eventually, we will see Omega put into a position where he has to defend both belts on the same night, which will probably be how he loses the IMPACT belt. Given the two referees and everyone at ringside, the makings of a non-finish or a screw job finish where neither person loses their title were present. This is the route the booking should’ve taken. Neither man should’ve won the other’s title.

GREEN: Ever since AEW has begun working with other wrestling companies, the possibilities for Kenny Omega have become endless. Now that he has become IMPACT World Champion, I hope he appears on the show in some capacity, even if it is just a pre-recorded promo. Omega as champion on IMPACT can attract a lot of viewers from AEW, as well as viewers of NJPW. To me, there is only one true name that can challenge for Omega's IMPACT World Championship, and that name is Samoa Joe. A match between Joe and Omega without a doubt has a chance to be a huge draw, and can be one of the biggest matches in IMPACT's recent history, especially with how shocking it was to see Joe get fired by WWE. Whilst Joe's health as a wrestler is somewhat unknown, and his health should come first, a brutal match between Omega and Joe for the Impact World Championship can once again remind fans of how talented Joe is, and can be an amazing match to add to the stellar career of Omega.

ALLSOPP: If there is any respect for the IMPACT World Championship, Kenny Omega will defend it on a regular basis. The benefit to IMPACT’s taping schedule is that Omega can appear in multiple episodes without taking a big hit to his AEW commitments. This would allow him to be a strong champion that actually adds to the legacy of the belt. I do think, however, that Rich Swann should beat him for the belt, but only if he kicks out of the One Winged Angel first, such is the level of protection that the move receives.

Question 3: Would it be beneficial to either company if IMPACT Wrestling was to be absorbed into AEW? Would IMPACT continue to exist in some form, or will it essentially dissolve?

GREEN: Personally, I would still like to see IMPACT exist as a company, but just be absorbed more with AEW. One part of AEW this would greatly assist in is AEW's women’s division. AEW can use the best from the female talent pool to really make a solid division. IMPACT dissolving and joining AEW on the one show would only make things complicated for AEW, and would also hurt a lot of names for both AEW and IMPACT due to the roster being too big.

ALLSOPP: I agree it would mainly benefit AEW if both companies were to merge, but this is because the AEW intellectual properties would be used, not those of IMPACT Wrestling. However, if Tony Khan was to keep IMPACT as a developmental brand, both entities would benefit as AEW can reap the results of top tier talent on IMPACT getting over before making an assault on AEW, whilst IMPACT can create it’s own niche. Ultimately, I’d be sad to see the company be dissolved, so I hope they can retain some level of competition if there was some form of a merger.

COLEMAN: It would be beneficial to AEW if they absorbed IMPACT because the acquisition addresses all of their deficiencies, especially their women’s division. IMPACT would only benefit from being absorbed into AEW if their talent gets a real opportunity to be featured and look strong, especially in comparison to AEW talent. WWE purchasing WCW would’ve worked better if those two promotions were kept separate and ran separately. If IMPACT was absorbed, eventually they would be dissolved and their talent and executives would become AEW employees.

Those are our thoughts on the issue, but where do you stand?

Let us know your answers to these questions in the comments below!

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AUTHOR OF THIS POST: DALLAS ALLSOPP

Dallas Allsopp is a writer with two main interests, Pokemon and wrestling. He has been writing for a few years for his own personal blogs and is now taking his passion for wrestling and putting it into his writing. You can follow him on Facebook.

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