History! Amid controversy, Tessa Blanchard wins the Impact World Championship
This was the moment Tess Blanchard was groomed for. The opportunity was hers for the taking, but with her history catching up to her, one had to wonder if Impact Wrestling would go through with their plans. Like the name of the companies PPV, Hard To Kill, plans remained unchanged.
Inside The Bomb Factory, Dallas, TX, the third-generation star defeated Sami Callihan to win the Impact World Championship. Tessa won after two Canadian Destroyers, one off the ropes, and a Hammerlock DDT. She became the first female star to win a world title for a major promotion. That includes Sexy Star in Lucha Underground.
Angle. Sting. Joe. Foley. Styles. RVD. Hardy. Anderson. Storm. Roode. Aries. Bully Ray. Sabin. Magnus. Young. Lashley. EC3. Hardy. Galloway. Edwards. Patron. Drake. Pentagon. IMPACT. Cage. Callihan.
— IMPACT (@IMPACTWRESTLING) January 13, 2020
It was an enormous moment for pro wrestling overshadowed by controversy. Earlier this weekend, Tessa went on Twitter and asked for women to support other women. It resulted in wrestlers like Allysin Kay, Chelsea Green and Isla Dawn calling her out for past comments that were deemed racist or demeaning to all female wrestlers. Blanchard did not speak to the media prior to Hard to Kill (along with a few other wrestlers) and attempted to defend herself on social media. During the PPV, there were noticeable cheers and low boos.
Following the match, when Impact was off the air, Tessa cut a promo on her history-making moment and the news that surrounded her.
“Over the past eight months this has been my life,” Tessa stated. “Sami and oVe have been the thorn in my side, and tonight, we did it. Nobody, nobody in this life is perfect. We’re all human. It doesn’t matter what you say about me, it doesn’t matter what you call me. I am now the standard-bearer of Impact Wrestling. Man, woman, pound-for-pound, I am one of the best in the world and I am now your World Champion!’
Impact ended up sticking to their guns and pulled the trigger on a months-old storyline that has helped cement Tessa as one of the best talents in wrestling today. As for what is next for her, the future is unknown. Impact returns to Mexico soon, and a break from the U.S. media scene can do Tessa some good. The overall presentation of Tessa will be interesting as the backlash continues to unfold.
Regardless of previous comments (no matter how bad they are), the deed is done. What Tessa does next, along with Impact in general, will be very important to monitor.
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