It wasn't a pipe bomb, but Impact Wrestling and Rob Van Dam delivered their own explosive promo during Impact's debut on AXS TV. RVD was in a hot tub where he said there would be no Kenny Omega, Daniel Bryan or Young Bucks without him.
Sami Callihan discussed that promo when he spoke to Wrestling Inc. on our WINCLY podcast.
"That's the real RVD. People think RVD is a quiet dude that smokes himself out all day long. But RVD has accomplished everything he's wanted to accomplish in this business. He's probably bored with life but now he's living his best life because he pretty much told everyone to kiss his ass," stated Callihan.
He added that The Bucks and Omega are friends of his but the reality is there would be no current style without what RVD did.
"Same thing if you look at a guy like Petey Williams. He completely changed the business with the creation of the Canadian Destroyer and I feel he deserves more credit," said Callihan.
Most national promotions these days don't call out those from other promotions directly so Callihan was asked if Impact will lean in more and call out their rivals directly.
"I think Impact isn't afraid to do that and they're not afraid to give you a more adult-oriented story," revealed Callihan. "Not all wrestling fans are the same and the group of people we are catering to is that demographic. People that want violence. People that want sexual storylines. Stuff that people would watch on Game of Thrones is what they are gonna be able to get with Impact Wrestling."
Callihan then further talked about the differences between Impact and all other wrestling promotions.
"I think it's a true alternative. Over the past year we've had one of the best wrestling shows on the planet..." said Callihan. "Everyone always b-----s and complains that the Attitude Era was the best era in pro wrestling. Well Impact is pretty damn close and is giving you exactly what you want. They're not afraid to get violent or cross that line because they're not worried about offending people. At the end of the day they're gonna be true to themselves just like I'm true to myself."
A recent hot topic in pro wrestling is the referee and AEW came under fire recently for allowing outside interference and there being no disqualification. Callihan was asked how important it is for Impact's ref to be consistent.
"It has to be consistent because you can't insult people's intelligence and you can't confuse people. Not completely burying AEW because they're doing their own thing very successfully, but I saw a lot of fans get really confused in the first episode when Omega and The Bucks were in a six-man tag match and Jon Moxley attacked him from behind and there was never a DQ," said Callihan.
"I think what Impact does better than everyone is explain exactly what they're doing. I was watching AXS TV this past weekend and Don Callis put over one thing that made the world of difference. He said everything at Impact is up to the ref's discretion. If a ref determines a match should get floored, a ref has that power to make that call."
Callihan then talked about what's up next for him and Impact as he's now the face of the company as their world champion.
"Impact goes back to NYC next week at Melrose Ballroom. You should probably buy tickets right now because you'll witness history as Sami Callihan walks into Impact Wrestling for the first time as their new Impact world champion," stated Callihan.
"Also, I already don't like the New York Commission, so I might do something to get Impact kicked out of that building so we never have to go back again. So, you should probably buy tickets for that now."
New Impact Wrestling World Heavyweight Champion Sami Callihan can be seen every Tuesday night, 8/7c, as part of Impact Wrestling on AXS TV.
Sami's full interview with Wrestling Inc aired as part of a recent episode of our WINCLY podcast. It can be heard via the embedded audio player at the bottom of this post. Featuring Sami discussing his big title win, who he thinks should get a title shot first, Impact's debut on AXS TV, Joey Ryan signing with Impact Wrestling, Ken Shamrock's Impact future, which Knockout he'd like in oVe and more.