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Compare and Contrast TNA and AEW: AEW Fight for the Fallen 6/13/19

Hello, Gatecrashers! I’m Barrett and I’m about to mark the fuck out for AEW’s Fight For The Fallen! This event took place on July 13, 2019 at the now familiar Daily’s Place. Per Wikipedia “The company held the charity event to support victims of gun violence, with all gate receipts from the event being donated to these victims.” The charity aspect was directly in response to the Jacksonville Landing shooting at a video game tournament in 2018. This show was free in North America with the gate proceeds donated to charity.

Time for The Buy In! Watch it with me!

Bad: ALEX MARVEZ NOOOO

I figured out why Marvez doesn’t work for me. He’s Bizzaro-Michael Cole. Cole YELLS EVERYTHING HE SEES AT THE SAME VOLUME, SO EVERYTHING IS IMPORTANT SO NOTHING IS IMPORTANT. Marvez delivers everything like he’s on an international flight and  he’s trying not to wake up the person next to him. With Marvez it’s nothing is important so nothing is important.

Good: Sonny Kiss’ Entrance!

JAZZ HANDS!

Mid: Kisshhhhhhh

Peter “The Librarian” Avalon and Sonny “The Limber-rarian” Kiss have a short inoffensive match. Sonny is stupid flexible and fast but them strikes are very weak. Avalon does some old school heel work, a lot of “SHUT UP”’s to the audience. “The Librarian” Leva Bates helps Sonny back into the ring like a nice person should, but then later distracts Sonny by showing him the cover of…  let me zoom in on the video… “Hello Sunshine” which is I guess related to “Sonny” or maybe Kiss just likes novels about Youtube cooking hosts who get doxxed.

Sonny Kiss is queer and nobody on commentary makes a bid deal out of it. There’s no face announcer Don West telling us that everything he does is gross or “why can’t he do that in the privacy of his own home?” It’s so refreshing to have announcers focus on Kiss’ wrestling instead of 20 year old TNA trying to gay panic me.

You can read about my feelings on The Librarian gimmicks in the two previous AEW columns.

Good: When Dustin Cuts a Promo

Cody and Dustin Rhodes (aka The Brotherhood) are interviewed by Jenn Sterger to hype up their match with the jerky Young Bucks. Cody is pretty measured, but Dustin goes BIG on his half of the interview. Best line: “I personally am going to powerslam you both SO HARD, your SOULS are going to LEAVE YOUR BODIES.” Cody fields a question about Sean Spears’ brutal ass chair attack a couple weeks ago at Fyter Fest.  Dustin drops a quick Goldust *chomp* at Jenn on the way out. Great stuff.

Good: Boring people vs WILD CHARACTERS

Generic Face Britt Baker and unused stack of copy paper Riho face off against the Big Beast Tokyo Joshi Pro Champion Shoko Nakajima and spoopy evil Stardom Champion Bea Priestly.  Shoko is dressed like a white wolf with full headpiece and tail.

Pictured: Shoko Nakajima and Shoko Nakajima again

Priestly looks like the Negative Universe Britt Baker here. They’re both tall, lanky, strong and all over the place in wrestling quality. Years ago a friend was telling me about a band he was in. He said the guitarist was a beginner and an expert at the same time. He could play basic chords or play high speed off time Dillinger Escape Plan-y stuff, but he didn’t know about how to build a song or how to discuss music. That’s kind of what Baker and especially Priestly are like. Some great moves mixed with the basics with a lot of fuck ups and dangerous mistakes between them.

At one point Baker goes to the wrong corner to tag Shoko and it’s great.

Shoko and Riho work SUPER great together. They’re about the same size, allowing them to do, like, POWER MOVES and SLUGFESTS along with a bunch of flippy shit.  It’s all very smooth and fun to watch.

The match is pretty hot from start to finish. Shoko reverses a hurricanara from Riho into a pin. After the match Baker and Priestly go at it. Their tag team partners pull them apart. 

Good/Bad: Closed Captioned for the Hearing Impaired and the Hearing Unimpaired

I forgot this was the PPV where the captions came on for some reason but they’re all fucked up.

I’ve always said that Kip Sabian is an iQRIK) a “ 3 ; PgS]   V=.<ZJy&uU.

Not to skip Kip here. He has a good promo about being an afterthought in the upcoming contest with Adam Page. Kip is a good promo and worker. It’s too bad he’s been lost in the shuffle since… this match.

The Buy In has been bought. Let’s get to the PPV!

Good: Everybody gets a story, everybody gets a payday

We got a six man tag featuring the mostly Young Guns of AEW. “Cody’s Other Brother” MJF, “No Panda Head BOOO” Sammy Guevara and “The Ch10r Man” Sean Spears vs. Darby Allin, Jimmy Havoc, and THE BAAAD BOY JOEY JANELLA! When The Dapper Yapper says “THE BAAAAD BOY” he sounds like he’s talking about a little kid who is naughty.

MJF has heat with Spears since Spears jumped BFF Cody at the last event. MJF is super pissed and definitely doesn’t want to be on the heel team but, you know, he’a fucking heel for life. He talks more shit to Spears than his actual opponents. “HEY SPEARS! TAKE NOTES! TAKE NOTES!” They steal tags from each other, they flip each other off, they steal taunts… it’s great. The audience can’t decide if they hate Spears of MJF more.

The story of this match is TENSION. Allin stares down Janella after a tag to Havoc instead of Allin. Allin is mad at Spears as well since he stole Allin’s moment after the draw vs. Cody at Fyter Fest. Havoc hates MJF because of course he does. Allin is driven crazy by Guevara’s arrogance.

Darby is reaping the benefits of the draw with Cody. The crowd is chanting for him and popping for all his big moves. AEW knew he was money from Day 1.

Janella legit says “FUCK YOU CORNETTE” to the camera along with the BIG BIRD!

The match ends with Spears hitting the Death Valley Driver on Allin after Allin loses track of who the legal man is.

This is a great opener, getting eyes on the lower and midcard AEW talent while keeping the wrestlers healthy. We’re also getting a bit of character development and teases of possible future feuds. Right now AEW needs some stories. Great matches will only go so far into keeping people engaged.

Good: Brandi and Allie Build

There’s a video package for Brandi vs. Allie that is super good. Brandi expresses a lot of self doubt here and it’s very real.

Bad: Allie Out

Brandi shakes hands with Allie, but then Awesome Kong’s music hits while Brandi laughs. She’s the heel for the match which feels bad after the video package. Kong comes to ringside to MENACE and STARE.

The match isn’t very good. They stay away from the old WWE hair pulling spots, but their moves are awkward and sluggish. They lose the crowd pretty early and don’t get them back. Brandi wins with a BIONIC SPEAR. She has a surgically repaired clavicle so I guess her spear hurts more? Because of screws?

Brandi and Kong beat down Allie after the bell. AJA KONG STEPS OUT OF THE TUNNEL. IT’S A KONG STAREDOWN.

THE QUEEN OF KONGS

The refs break it up before things get too fucking amazing. Also the world breaks up this matchup before things got too fucking amazing. Awesome Kong was too injured to work any matches at this point and would soon be gone from AEW. We can’t have the nicest of things!

Good: Uno, Stu, Three Way Tag

It’s the first OFFICIAL appearance of The Dark Order in tag action. They do the “Creepers make a creepy throne” bit. The as yet unnamed Hybrid2, Jack Evans and Angelico, do some flips and breakdancing. The crowd pops when A Boy and His Dinosaur (Jungle Boy and Luchasaurus) come to the ring accompanied by Marko Stunt. The winner of this match gets a first round bye in the Tag Tournament. Mr. Saurus and Mr. Boy are definitely the most over here. The Dark Order and Evans/Angelico get respect claps for their work but nobody is losing their shit for anything they do. 

They liked this.

I notice that Jungle Boy has already dropped his “I was raised by wolves who were raised by apes” body language and silent act, which is for the best. Currently in late 2021, Jungle Boy is getting a character rehab in his feud with Adam Page. At this point he’s a tough wrestler who I guess likes jungles. Kind of like Kevin Steen and zoos. OH GIVE ME THAT TAG TEAM JUNGLE BOY AND KEVIN STEEN AND CALL THEM THE WORLD WILDLIFE FOUNDATION.

Luchasaurus is the true star of this match, at least for the audience. Everything he does gets a pop. He gets tons of chants. When I saw these early AEW shows I was convinced that he’d be in the main event picture, but a knee injury put him on the shelf and ate up some of his heat.

Luchasaurus and Jungle Boy have similar issues; they can’t be AEW singles champions with their current gimmicks. I think either would make great TNT or AEW Men’s World Champions with some continued tweaks for Mr. Boy and a complete revamp for Mr. Saurus.

Me when I’m throwing the bulk paper towels on the top shelf.

Oh, yeah, I was talking about a match. It’s another good PWG style pre-intermission showcase. A couple of blown spots and the ref just letting Marko Stunt do flippy shit in the ring are small marks against a fun, if quiet, match. The Dark Order win with some great strategy, clearing the ring, working over a Boy and a Dinosaur with team moves before pinning Boy with the FATAL1TY. Their story was that they were ring generals but the announce team doesn’t pick that up.

Good: Meaningless Fun

Sabian vs. Page here. Unfortunately this feels like filler; Page is already booked for the AEW title match. Everything Sabian gains here is in the abstract; he’d look good for a future title shot if he gets a win over the Page if Page actually wins the title. Which, as we all knew in 2019, was inevitable seeing as how Page was in The Elite and OF COURSE they will put the belts on themselves as soon as possible!

KIP IS GONNA KISS YOU! KIP IS GONNA KISS YOU!

It’s easy to forget how charismatic Sabian is. He’s shown sparks of it here and there but hasn’t had the opportunity to do anything since Gamer Miro. I know he’s currently working a post-modern Shia LaBeouf thing but until he shows up on Dynamite he’s going nowhere. The guy is too good to be relegated to WCW Alex Wright status.

The story of the match is hard-hitting but hamstring-injured Hangman vs. the speed of Sabian. Sabian has trouble pressing his advantage; Page keeps absorbing the attacks and laying Sabian out. Unfortunately this leads to a lot of slow back and forth for the middle stretch of the match. Even the sprint at the end is more like a jog. Page wins after reversing some… leg thing… into the Deadeye. Sabian takes Page to 19 minutes of a 20 minute time limit, but that isn’t enough to make it memorable or consequential. It’s a perfectly fine match but not a hidden gem by any stretch.

Good: WHO IS THAT MASKED MAN oh it’s jericho

Post match a fully clad blue eyed Creeper comes into the ring behind Page and jumps him, eventually connecting with a Codebreaker. OH EMM GEE IT’S CHRIS JERICHO!!! Page comes up bloody and eats a Judas Effect. Jericho flips off the audience and leaves.

Okay, I love this BUT. This is the second time that Jericho has shown up in an AEW-ish event and pulled the Mask Reveal bit. He did it at All In after Omega beat Penta by replacing Penta and then doing the beatdown on Omega, then pulling the mask off to reveal that BY GOD IT’S JERICHO! Now he does it again here… but in both cases I have to ask “why?”. What purpose does the mask serve? In neither case does it help him get the drop on anyone. He attacked Omega and Page while their backs were turned, so the mask is only there to disguise him from the audience. I’ll talk about AEW Mask Reveals more down the line.

My theory is that Chris Jericho the character is still bitter about the ol’ Malenko/Ciclope bit from Slamboree 98, but he still hasn’t figured out that the mask reveal wasn’t the important part, but that it was part of a longer strategy by Malenko to get another shot at Jericho. It’s all about the mask coming off, baby! Masks! Pull off a mask! What’s the point of a mask if not to pull it off and have people go OMG IS JERIMAN!!!

The Painmaker: Origins

Good: Big Bad Beetle Bros

“Just by a chance freed a ghost who made them luchadores!”

The Lucha Brothers face off against SCU: Skyzarian Configuration. We are in the “Penta is so fucking over” phase of The Lucha Brother’s career. Penta is such a badass here, taking no shit and giving no fucks. There’s a rare “face gets ejected from ringside” bit as The Lucha Bros beat up Daniels on the outside, only for Daniels to hit an Arabian Moonsault. That’s enough for Aubrey to send him away by referee-al decree.

BING! BANG! BONG!

J.R. is in full “old man yelling at spots” mode. “How many DDTs are we going to see here? Somethings gotta give, fellas!”

The match is tight all of the way through. Skyzarian look super strong here, even though they lose after getting hit with the Stomp Package Piledriver combo. Both teams deliver here. Definitely worth watching.

After the match The Bros grab a color scheme matching ladder, racking the returning Daniels and dumping the rest of SCU outside. Penta gets on the mic, tapping the rhythm of “Cero Miedo” while climbing to the top of the ladder with Rey. Rey says “What about a ladder match? The Young Bucks vs The Best Tag Team on the Planet, the Lucha Brothers! Chicago, All Out! The Best tag team on the planet, nahnahnah The Universe!” Well, fuck.

Bad: Kenny Omega is a fucking loser!

Kenny HAS YET TO WIN A SINGLES MATCH and they’re trying to tell me that if he doesn’t win soon he’ll be overlooked. Ludicrous storytelling.

Good: I hope you like Metoras

CIMA vs. Omega is a match that has taken place across thousands of Total Extreme Wrestling simulator seasons, but this was the first time they met in real life. It’s not quite a DREAM MATCH, more like a “Wouldn’t that be cool” match.

This match feel so unexpected. We knew both Cima and Omega were capable of just stellar matches. Both have at least one 5 star match from Meltzer. The only thing we needed to see was if they’re styles would mesh. Shockingly, they do!

There is real “All/New Japan Energy” here. The match has a measured pace, then they both target their opponents limbs, then lots of strikes, an extended section outside the ring, then spamming signature moves before teasing the finish.

For fans of long term storytelling: Kenny doesn’t show a ton of personality here, but halfway through the match he gets violent. He was jumped by Moxley at All Out, then returned the favor at Fyter Fest. Moxley is trying to infect Omega and it’s working. Kenny clears the timekeepers table and SURPRISE MOTHERFUCKER it doesn’t work out!

“METEORA!” – Immortan Joe

Kenny isn’t THERE yet. And, truly, the Omega that Moxley wanted, the vicious man who would do anything to win, doesn’t appear until the Deathmatch in March of 2021.

CIMA does as many Meteoras (see above) as Kenny does V-Triggers. Some people aren’t fans of Signature Spamming but I love it. Signatures don’t win matches; they set up finishers. Kenny knees people in the head over and over again so that the One Winged Angel hits that much harder.

They do one of those spots I love where an injury affects the match. Cima dropkicks Kenny into the ropes but his knee gives out when he tries to cross the ring, leaving him open to another V-Trigger.  Cima tries to counter and reverse intot pins, but it’s not enough. Kenny kicks out of a crucifix pin, Cima can’t stand up and eats another V-Trigger followed by a One-Winged Angel for the pin.

Great match that really feels like the transition from NJPW Omega to AEW Omega. The notes are the same, they’re just being played a bit differently.

Mid: A Red Mark(er) On Your Record

Jericho gets some mic time. He says he has Hangman Page’s blood on his hand, but it’s obviously Raspberry Red Scratch N Sniff Marker.

If you put the marker up your nose and breathe in real hard you can see God.

This is part of Jericho’s “Thank You Tour”, where he wants a thank you from AEW. The fans chant “Thank You” and he says “NOT FROM YOU!” He also calls Jacksonville “Jerksonville”, “Jackoffville.” and “The White Trash Rivera”. Not his best work.

He makes claims that all the successes of AEW are due to him, including the new TNT TV Show (“starting in October”). He said he was looking at the Casino (Battle) Royale from the last PPV and wondering who would be the winner, including a dig at “Brandon Cutler, the Young Bucks cabana boy.” SPEAKING IT INTO EXISTENCE.

Jericho says if he loses to Hangman it’s the beginning of the end of AEW and Jericho as well. He can’t accept that it’s the end, so he has to beat the hangman, has to beat the hangman, has to beat the hangman, has to beat the hangman, HAS TO BEAT THE HANGMAN!

“This federation deserves a better class of wrestler. And I’m gonna give it to ’em.”

Page runs out and lays a BEATIN’ on Jericho. First Ever TNA Tag Team Champion Jerry Lynn and some less adorned refs come out to break things up. Eventually the lower end of the locker room joins in. Peter Avalon gets a “SHHHH”… chant(?) as he holds Jericho back. 

The segment is whatever. Painmaker Jericho does his best to put over why he attacked Page, to give some personal heat on the match, but it’s not a super great promo. The “blood” is a symbol of the angle; it looks fake and it’s trying too hard. I think being the first AEW World Champion is all the heat the match needs.

Good: Stardust and Goldust vs. Generation Me

Technically Cody is still part of the Elite at this point, but in spirit he left the group at the end of All Out. Cody begins his alternate AEW timeline in this match. He lives in a parallel world where The Elite do not tread. The villains cross over but Cody hasn’t been seen alongside The Bucks in well over a year at this point (this point being December 2, 2021).

The Bucks have been acting like complete dickheads on BTE, making fun of the heartfelt moments from All Out. Instead Cody reaching out to his bloodied brother, Nick reaches out to a ketchup covered Matt. In this case the fake blood actually helped tell the story!

There’s a really nice sequence at the top of the match where Nick and Cody are going at it. They are both going for signature moves but their opponent is not there. It’s miss after miss after miss until Nick just BARELY misses a headkick to Cody and then gets in his face. It’s all a very effective way to show how well they know each other.

The Bucks figure that Dustin is the weak link in the match, so he spends a lot of time on defense. The Bucks work heel here, cutting off the ring, blocking the tags… I mean, #FTR all you want, but this is textbook southern heel work. 

TAG.

Tides turn when Matt gets a shoulder injury. Cody and Dustin work him over. When Nick gets the hot tag he goes shit-nuts with kicks, knees and running clotheslines. Nick is so goddamn athletic. After this the ref just lets them all wrestle. Lots of mirror moves going on here; double flips, double Sharpshooters, double Figure Fours, double Power Slams, double RAM THE JEWELS.

MELTZER DRIV- NO DISASTER KICK!

EVEN MORE DOUBLE STUFF HERE! The Bucks fake the Double Superkick, then do the Rhodes’ drop down Uppercut, then the Brotherhood hit Double Superkicks, then eat Superkicks of their own! Nick hits CrossRhodes! MELTZER DRIVERRRRRR for the pin. Great tag match, watch it!

Excalibur: THAT IS IT!
Marvez: that is it…

After the match The Bucks make peace and they’re about to make things fully right with The Brotherhood, but then Kenny’s music hits. Matt says “We must be running out of time” and it’s true. Kenny, Jurassic Express, Shahid Khan, Brandi Rhodes and  Brian Hughes from the Jacksonville Mayor’s Office come down with a big ol $150k check for the Victim Assistance Advisory Council.

Cody mentions that there was “counterprogramming” for this event. I totally forgot that WWE put the Evolve 10th anniversary on the network against Fight For The Fallen. WWE’s history of counterprogramming failures will continue!

Kenny takes the mic and refocuses the event on the charity aspect. He changes his catch phrase for this event “I must bid you adieu, GOODBYE SMOOCH AND GOODNIGHT BOIIIIING!”

CONCLUSION

AEW hasn’t been around for too long, but this is their first forgotten show. Not much of consequence happens. It’s like a pre-season game except the teams are actually trying. The only real feud going in was Bucks/Brotherhood and that’s wrapped up after the main event. We get some unnecessary heat between Jericho and Page for the upcoming AEW men’s title match but it feels forced. You could easily skip from Fyter Fest to All Out and not feel like you missed anything.

Let’s compare and contrast with the third weekly TNA PPV from 2002!

Wrestling:

AEW again delivered. Sometimes all you need is good wrestlers in the ring together and just let ‘em fight. TNA’s Tag Tournament did not result in any bangers or even bongers, just blanders.

Story:
Neither company is doing well at this point. TNA just has a bunch of people with anger issues yelling at each other or bum rushing each other for no explicable reason. AEW is taking the saner approach; put the wrestling up front to cover for the lack of established relationships. The Jericho/Page build is more along the lines of TNA’s RAGE ARGUING but at least Jericho immediately explains why he jumped Page instead of what TNA is going to do; keep the reasons for acrimony secret for as long as possible because they don’t have a payoff. RUSSO!

No explicit movement with Moxley and Omega this go around. We aren’t sure why Brandi is being such a meanie but she’s sticking with it for another event!

Identity:

TNA has found it’s lowest common denominator lane and is sticking with it.

But what is AEW? Fight for the Fallen doesn’t answer any questions in that regard. It’s “wrestling first” but so was early Ring of Honor. The Code of Honor was a nice shortcut for good vs. bad and it felt like going to an underground hardcore show. AEW was slick and produced and had great action, but… were they ROH 2.0? New Japan? NXT? PWG with less jokes? It was hard to say. Getting Dynamite definitely helped transition the wrestlers into characters and the matches into storylines.

Audience Satisfaction:

AEW wins here again. The show ends with a great match, friends making up with each other, and a gift to charity. TNA wins with a pointless swerve and Jarrett beating Hall with a trophy. It’s barely a cliffhanger and nobody leaving that night could have felt super great on the way back to their car.

Best Matches
TNA
4 Way X Division Championship Match – TNA Weekly PPV 2

AEW
The Young Bucks vs. The Lucha Brothers for the AAA Tag Titles – Double or Nothing 2019
Cody Rhodes vs. Dustin Rhodes – Double or Nothing 2019

Kenny Omega vs. Chris Jericho – Double or Nothing 2019
The Elite vs. The Lucha Brothers and Laredo Kid – Fyter Fest 2019
Kenny Omega vs. CIMA – Fight for the Fallen 2019

Next week: TNA’s fourth weekly PPV, featuring GODDAMMIT THE DUPPS, The Flying Elvis Impersonators, Satanists, Norman Smiley, NASCAR MAN, Kid Romeo and the reason I tape traded for these first 8 TNA PPVS back in the day! WHO WAS THE WRESTLER THAT ROPED ME INTO BUYING THIS TRASH ON VHS? Join us next time to find out!

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AEW Dynamite Recap | 12/1/21 | From Duluth, GA

Previously on All Elite Wrestling…

Dynamite Results from 11/24/21 (Episode 112):

  • CM Punk & MJF had a very intense war of words prior to Punk’s match with QT Marshall.
  • CM Punk def. QT Marshall via pinfall (11:08) with the GTS.
  • 2point0 and their “son” Daniel Garcia confronted Eddie Kingston backstage, leading to Garcia tossing coffee in Kingston’s face.
  • The Gunn Club (Colten & Billy Gunn) def. Bear Country (Bear Bronson & Bear Boulder) via pinfall (1:36) after Colt pinned Bronson with the Colt 45. Post-match, Darby Allin & Sting appeared on the ramp, with Darby absolutely crushing Austin Gunn with a flying charge before he and Sting chased off Colten & Billy.
  • Adam Cole & Bobby Fish and the Best Friends had a standoff backstage, setting up a match between the two teams on Rampage this Friday.
  • Dante Martin shocked mentor Lio Rush (and everyone else) by joining Team Taz, much to Taz’s amusement.
  • Thunder Rosa def. Jamie Hayter via pinfall (10:38) to advance to the TBS Championship Tournament Semifinals. Just before the finish, Dr. Britt Baker accidentally hit a superkick intended for Rosa on Hayter, leading to the latter’s defeat.
  • Chris Jericho insulted 2point0, particularly Matt Lee for having a square head during a backstage promo.
  • Dr. Britt Baker’s “Friendsgiving” was ruined by the announcement that Riho would get a match against her on Rampage, where if she beats Britt, she gets an AEW Women’s Title shot.
  • Bryan Danielson def. Colt Cabana via submission (5:09) after a particularly arrogant LeBell Lock. Post-match, AEW World Champion “Hangman” Adam Page challenged Danielson to fight him, but the American Dragon backed off just before Page could hit a Buckshot Lariat.
  • Andrade El Idolo, Malakai Black, and FTR (Dax Harwood & Cash Wheeler) def. PAC, Cody Rhodes, and the Lucha Brothers (Rey Fenix & Penta El Zero M) via pinfall (16:13) after Andrade hit the Shadow DDT on PAC to get the win for his team.

Rampage Results for 11/26/21 (Episode 16)

  • Adam Cole & Bobby Fish def. Orange Cassidy & Wheeler YUTA via pinfall (12:52) after Fish hit the avalanche Falcon Arrow on YUTA for the win.
  • Tony Nese challenged Sammy Guevara for the TNT Championship, then attacking him with a blindside cheapshot.
  • Black Friday Deal: Riho def. Dr. Britt Baker via pinfall (11:11) to earn an AEW Women’s Championship shot.
  • Eddie Kingston def. Daniel Garcia via pinfall (14:58) with the uraken backfist. Post-match, 2point0 immediately beat up Kingston, but Chris Jericho stood up from the commentary table to chase Parker and Lee off. Kingston, however, didn’t seem too happy with Jericho’s intervention.

It’s Wednesday Night. You Know What That Means.

From the Gas South Arena in Atlanta, GA, it’s AEW Dynamite. With Jim Ross recovering from skin cancer treatments, he’s taking a well-deserved rest. As such, we’re joined by AEW World Champion “Hangman” Adam Page (who’s “unschooled in the art of barbeque”, per The Lower Third) on commentary. We also learn that the awaited AEW Title match between Page & Bryan Danielson will take place at Winter is Coming in two weeks time.

Match 1: Bryan Danielson vs. Alan “Five” Angels

Hometown hero Alan “Five” Angels was determined to stop Bryan Danielson’s war on the Dark Order (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

The Story So Far

Ahead of the aforementioned Danielson/Page title match at Winter is Coming, the American Dragon has set his sight on Page’s friends, the Dark Order. In the past two weeks, Danielson has defeated Evil Uno and Colt Cabana in brutal fashion, while backing away from Hangman when given a chance to fight. Tonight, Danielson fights Atlanta native Alan Angels as part of his continued quest to humiliate the Dark Order to get at Hangman.

The Match

Danielson and Angels size each other up as the bell rings and it’s on to a chain wrestling contest that ends with Danielson applying a single leg crab. Angels grabs at the rope to cause the hold to be broken. Back to a feeling out process, but Five hits chops on a cornered Danielson before hitting (of course) five punches at the top. As Danielson catches his breath, he flattens Five with an uppercut to regain advantage.

Knees to the head of Angels as Danielson taunts the crowd. Repeated chops to Five by Bryan, followed by a running dropkick to bring him down. Bryan’s in control at another corner while continuing to mock this Atlanta crowd. Backslide by Five gets a two. Butterfly suplex turned into an armbar, but Angels again manages to get to the ropes.

Attempted apron suplex by Danielson is blocked, which allows Five to hit a dropkick from the apron to send the American Dragon scurrying to the other side of ringside. Tope suicida, followed by a moonsault has Dragon on his toes. Back in the ring, Spanish Fly by 5 gets a two count. Up the top rope, moonsault press by Angels misses wildly, and Bryan hits the Running Knee. With eyes towards Adam Page at the commentary booth, Bryan stomps away at Five. Dragon is still not done. Knee Bar by Danielson ends this match.

Bryan Danielson def. Alan “Five” Angels via submission – Kneebar (6:09)

Post-Match

Bryan holds on to the submission for a bit after the match, and soon gets a post-match interview. He brags about not only kicking Five’s ass, but also apparently tearing his MCL. Next week, Bryan says he’s going to stomp the head in on the Dark Order member from Long Island. Then in two weeks time, he’s going to prove that Hangman Page is a “one hit wonder”.

Hangman’s heard enough of Bryan’s ranting, but he’s stopped by John Silver. “We all know you cannot touch Bryan tonight. But guess what? I can touch Bryan tonight… and that’s what I’m going to do!” says Johnny Hungee. Silver runs to the ring as Danielson cowers away from a fight. Danielson says that he won’t lower himself by fighting “that joke” in the ring. He says that he’d love to kick Page’s ass tonight, but that the “jerks” in Atlanta don’t deserve to see it before running away once again.

The Redeemer’s War with God

https://mobile.twitter.com/AEW/status/1466215522211704842

In a blank white area, we see Miro just standing around and screaming in anger. He says that he’s thankful for God revealing how much He was an asshole to him. He says that this has revealed what he must do next. Miro declares that he will storm the gates of Heaven until the floor runs red with blood.

Match 2: CM Punk vs. Lee Moriarty

Lee Moriarty was as poised as ever to get a major upset win over CM Punk on Dynamite (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

The Story So Far

Right as CM Punk has been embroiled in a war of words and egos with one Maxwell Jacob Friedman, Lee Moriarty has stepped up to challenge the Best in the World to a match tonight.

The Match

Just before the match starts, MJF makes his way to the ring to join us on commentary. In the ring, Punk and Moriarty shake hands before the match starts with trading wrist holds. Chain wrestling sequence between the two to start us off as MJF repeatedly talks trash about Punk on commentary.

Punk backs Moriarty in the corner and tees off with consecutive shoulder thrusts. Irish whip into the opposite corner, followed by a single-leg dropkick. Diving lariat by Punk takes us into the commercial break.

Back live with Punk missing a knee strike as Moriarty targets his arm. The master of TAIGASTYLE is mounting his own offensive assault on Punk, culminating with a belly-to-belly suplex. 1, 2, NO! Moriarty goes for a suplex, but Punk counters and lands a crossbody! Moriarty rolls that over into a pinfall that gets a close two. Another rollover into a crossface by Moriarty, but Punk uses the ropes to break it up. 

On the top rope, Punk goes for the avalanche Frankensteiner, but Moriarty flips him over for the pin! 1, 2…. KICKOUT! Now we get the two men exchanging pinfall attempts before Punk escapes and hits a nasty roundhouse kick to the back of Moriarty’s head!

Punk hooks Moriarty and blows a kiss before attempting the Pepsi Twist… but Moriarty avoids it and flattens Punk with his own Pepsi Twist! Lee is feeling it… Running Knee and the lifting DDT neckbreaker! 1, 2… 2.9999999!!!! Punk floats over a Moriarty suplex and turns a suplex into the GTS! 1, 2, 3! What a match.

CM Punk def. Lee Moriarty via pinfall – GTS (10:24)

Post-Match

MJF takes the mic after the match and says that it takes a lot of balls to claim to be the “best in the world” when Punk is struggling to beat the likes of QT Marshall and Lee Moriarty. He goes on to say that the only thing that Punk is supposedly the best in the world at is “getting into Britt Baker’s pants” (ugh…. more on my feelings on that later). Max christens Punk as “One Punk Jump”.

Punk responds by mocking MJF’s attire, saying that Max got into Larry David’s pyjamas. He puts over QT Marshall and Lee Moriarty as being better than MJF. Punk says that Max should bring his “needle-dick” to the ring so that he can kick his ass.

MJF says that we won’t see that fight, instead saying that he’ll do things like a professional during the Dynamite Diamond Battle Royal in his hometown on Long Island, NY. He brags about how he’ll be better than Piper in Portland, Bret in Canada, and CM Punk in Chicago. Max says that Punk shouldn’t bring his beloved dog Larry to shows anymore, threatening to put him to sleep.

Punk marches towards MJF, looking to kick his ass. Wardlow appears and gets in the way of Punk, allowing Max to taunt behind his heavy.

A Crisis in Team DMD

https://mobile.twitter.com/AEW/status/1466221391779438593

Dr. Britt Baker and company are backstage with their friend Tony Schiavone. Britt is mad about Riho beating her and Jamie Hayter losing to Thunder Rosa last week, as well as no-showing at Friendsgiving. Hayter and Britt give each other a hard time about wins and losses before Britt says that Hayter will face Riho next week on Dynamite.

All About the Boom or Whatever

Orange Cassidy tells Adam Cole what he thinks of him in the only way he can (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

We’re supposedly set to be joined by Adam Cole on commentary as he makes his Boom-filled entrance in full before taking his spot on the commentary table. Orange Cassidy soon enters the scene and confronts Cole at the table. He does the lazy slow kicks to Cole. As this is happening, the Young Bucks sneak behind Orange and look like they’re going to superkick him. Orange turns around and does the slow kicks to them before Cole hits the Golota special on OC’s groin. The SuperKliq proceed to mock Orange’s slow kicks with thier own lackadaisical kicks. The Bucks hit their usual superkick on OC to lay him out. It appears that the SuperKliq just might hit a BTE Trigger on Cassidy, but they’re chased off by Chuck Taylor & Wheeler YUTA, armed with steel chairs.

Tony Nese’s Gameplan

Hyping up his match on Rampage this Friday for the TNT Title against champion Sammy Guevara, Tony Nese says that they’ll be putting the TNT Title around a Premier Athlete’s waist on Friday.

Match 3: Wardlow vs. AC Adams

Wardlow brought the pain with a Powerbomb Symphony, to the approval of the Atlanta fans (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

The Story So Far

Not really much of a story between these two opponents, as it’s just another showcase for “Mr. Mayhem” to do his thing.

The Match

AC Adams tries for a kick, but a clothesline from Wardlow takes him down. From there, it’s a “Powerbomb Symphony”, as Excalibur puts it. Wardlow continues to hit repeated powerbombs to the crowd’s approval as Shawn Spears tries in vain to wave him off. 

Wardlow def. AC Adams via pinfall – Powerbomb (1:30)

Post-Match

Shawn Spears rushes the ring and proceeds to hit the fallen AC Adams with chair shots before raising the hand of Wardlow in a rather overzealous fashion.

Punished “Venom” PAC

https://mobile.twitter.com/AEW/status/1466228600122884097

Backstage with Penta El Zero M & PAC, we learn that the 2-out-of-3 Falls match for the AEW Tag Titles is off due to undisclosed travel issues with Rey Fenix. However, we’ll instead see Penta & PAC take on FTR on Rampage this Friday. Penta & Alex Abrahantes hype up PAC as their best ally for Friday. Sporting an eyepatch due to Malakai Black’s mist, PAC says that even with one good eye, he’s still good to go on Friday.

Match 4: The Gunn Club (Colten & Billy Gunn) vs. Darby Allin & Sting

Sting and Billy Gunn renewed their Monday Night War hostilities inside the AEW ring this week on Dynamite (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

The Story So Far

Two weeks ago on Rampage, Darby Allin defeated Billy Gunn, which led to the Gunn Club laying him and Sting out. The retaliation came last week on Dynamite, when Darby and Sting chased the Gunn Club from the ring.

The Match

Taz has joined the commentary table as this match gets underway. Darby & Colten start things off for their respective teams. Back elbow from Colten is followed by a takedown. Arm drag attempt by Darby is blocked initially, but he gets it on the second go. Shotgun dropkick sends Colten to his corner. Billy Gunn tags in. Darby tags Sting into the match and we get the Monday Night Wars exploding here in 2021. Sting has the momentum, as Billy retreats to the outside to recuperate. Colten tags back in as Darby re-enters the match. Blind tag by Billy Gunn here. Coffin splash from Darby is turned into a hard slam by Billy Gunn. The heels have the advantage as we go to commercial break.

We return with Colten attempting a Scorpion Death Lock on Darby, who escapes. Darby is able to escape Colten as Sting gets the hot tag. The Stinger is a house of fire as he goes buck wild on Colten and Billy Gunn with Stinger Splashes and spinebusters. In the middle of the ring, Sting has Colten right where he wants him and applies the original Scorpion Death Lock on the Son of a Gunn. Billy provides a distraction to allow Austin Gunn to get a cheap shot on Sting. Darby Allin launches himself at Austin on the outside and damn near breaks his neck in the process! Meanwhile, Billy Gunn with the Fameasser on Sting as Colten crawls over for the pin… 1… 2… NO! Everyone recovering in the ring as Darby yet again flies like a madman to take down Billy Gunn outside. Floatover stunner by Darby on Colten leads to the Scorpion Death Drop by Sting. 1, 2, 3! The Streak… is over.

Sting & Darby Allin def. The Gunn Club via pinfall – Scorpion Death Drop on Colten Gunn (10:06)

You Want A Taste?

https://mobile.twitter.com/AEW/status/1466228597702725638

As Chris Jericho explains to Alex Marvez why he intervened against 2point0 last week on Rampage, he’s ambushed by Matt Lee and Jeff Parker, as well as their “son” Daniel Garcia. The trio toss Jericho all around before Lee smashes a chair over Jericho’s head.

FTW Math

New Team Taz member Dante Martin & Ricky Starks look like they could be a formidable duo (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

The commentary team talks about the Dynamite Diamond Battle Royal set for next week, which leads to Taz offering up his own brand of math. He claims that since 25% of the Battle Royal competitors represent Team Taz, that gives them each a 125% chance of winning next week. “The numbers don’t lie,” says Taz. Soon, Lio Rush appears from the entryway with a mic in hand.

Lio says that he’s had the odds stacked against him throughout his entire career and that it’s crazy for Taz to claim that he’s got 0% chance of winning. He says that he’s a fighter, and that the fans know he’s a fighter. Lio says that he won’t be going down without a fight next week. As Taz tells Lio to retire, we see Dante Martin & Ricky Starks stand opposite of Dante’s former mentor.

A Match for Rampage Made

https://mobile.twitter.com/AEW/status/1466230660138422272

Jade Cargill & “Smart” Mark Sterling talk about how Thunder Rosa’s student Janai Kai (of Mission Pro Wrestling) will be facing Jade on Rampage this Friday. This leads to Thunder Rosa herself appearing and saying that she’ll be guest commentator for Jade’s match against Janai Kai on Friday. As Jade and Sterling walk off, Rosa just opts to tell her TBS Championship Tournament opponent off.

Match 4: Ruby Soho vs. Kris Statlander (TBS Championship Tournament Quarterfinals)

Ruby Soho & Kris Statlander put it all on the line in an excellent TBS Championship Tournament bout (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

The Story So Far

Kris Statlander earned a first-round bye due to her high placement in the women’s rankings, while Ruby Soho defeated Penelope Ford to advance to the Quarterfinals of this TBS Championship Tournament. While the two are respectful towards one another, expect to see an incredible match between these two.

The Match

Back and forth between Kris and Ruby to start off. Kris blocks a backslide attempt and we’re at an impasse early on. Off the ropes, Ruby attempts a crucifix into a roll up, and Statlander toes for a kick that Ruby blocks. There’s a boop on Ruby’s nose.

Exchanging pinfalls that only get near falls. Ruby tries a monkey flip, but Statlander uses a handstand to escape. Soho with the casador and turns that into an arm drag. Flatliner by Ruby gets a two. We go to commercials at this point.

Back on Dynamite as Statlander and Ruby are on opposite corners. STO by Ruby takes Statlander down, and that’s followed by the senton off the top rope. 1, 2…. NOPE! Sttlander blocks a back suplex and counters an attempted casadora from Ruby into the Blue Thunder Bomb! 1, 2…. Ruby kicks out! Statlander applies the Spider Crab on Ruby and lifts her up for the buckle bomb to block a triangle choke attempt! Statlander turns that into a modified Michinoku Driver, but that only gets an incredibly close near-fall.

Kris goes for a running elbow strike, but Ruby starts to fight back. Turnbuckle headscissors attempt by Ruby is blocked, but she eventually gets an amazing poison rana on Statlander, followed by the running rana! 1… 2… 2.9999999!!! Soho has a very shocked reaction to that kickout as the fans chant “A-E-W” in appreciation of this match.

Ruby sizes Statlander up for the No Future kick, but that’s blocked. Kris preps her foe for the Big Bang Theory, but Ruby rolls up for the surprise three-count to advance to the TBS Championship Tournament Semifinals!

Ruby Soho def. Kris Statlander via pinfall – Victory Roll (10:28)

Post-Match

The two competitors show respect for one another as Statlander makes her exit from the ring. She’s stopped at the ramp by Vickie Guerrero, which allows for Nyla Rose to ambush Ruby in the ring! Statlander chases Nyla off.

Match 5: Cody Rhodes vs. Andrade El Idolo (Atlanta Street Fight)

Cody Rhodes takes “getting heat” to its most literal level imaginable (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

The Story So Far

Andrade El Idolo interjected himself in Cody’s affairs after the American Nightmare fought off Andrade and Malakai Black following a match on Rampage a few weeks ago. This led to a match on the 11/3 edition of Dynamite where Andrade defeated Cody with some timely help from FTR. Last week, the alliance of Andrade, Black, and FTR got the win in a massive eight-man tag match after Andrade pinned PAC. Following the conclusion of Dynamite, Andrade would attack Cody, which would lead to a Shadow DDT onto the exposed concrete at ringside.

The Match

Andrade isn’t waiting for Cody to get to the ring as he rushes at him while he’s still on the ramp. Meanwhile, Jose the Assistant fights Arn Anderson (who takes an unfortunate tumble at the side of the stage). The bell sounds and the fight between Cody and Andrade just spills all around the stage — both figuratively and literally as Cody and Andrade throw drinks at one another at one point. Rhodes with the splash from one of the in-crowd barricades takes down Andrade. This fight eventually makes its way back to ringside as Andrade flips over the steps. Andrade plants Cody onto the overturned steps. As Cody recovers, he notices T-Pain in the crowd, who hands him a chair to use against Andrade. After more brawling at ringside, the fight finally is in the ring. 

Cody takes in the mixed reaction for a bit before hitting Andrade with a scoop slam. He removes his weight belt but gets socked in the groin by Andrade. With Cody’s weight belt in his hand, he gives the American Nightmare a taste of his own medicine before tossing the belt into the crowd (no worries, it’s not tossed back again this week). Andrade sees Jose’s bag of stuff on the apron and pulls out a laptop, which he bashes Cody over the head with.

Andrade pulls out some plunder from underneath the ring, including a chain and a trashcan lid, but not the table. El Idolo misses wth the chain, but he knocks Cody down with a boot to the gut. He mocks the crowd chanting “we want tables” before setting up a chair over Cody’s prone body. Off the top rope, Andrade hits the split-legged moonsault with the chair adding some extra damage! 1… 2… NO!

Cody reverses a backdrop and kicks Andrade right in the groin!.As Rhodes runs to the rope to perhaps go for the Cody Cutter, Andrade dumps him on the outside as Dynamite goes to the last commercial of the evening.

We return with Cody countering an attempted Andrade El Idolo moonsault by just throwing a chair at him. Both competitors are battered and bruised, but they’re still going at it. Cody wraps his fist around with the chain and punches Andrade in the face with the chained fist. Cody’s suicide dive is blocked with a chair to the face by Andrade.

Andrade rips up the ring mat and looks to hit the Shadow DDT yet again onto the exposed pavement, but Cody is able to reverse it. Now it’s Cody’s turn to get some toys from ringside. He gets a kendo stick and a very familiar-looking sledgehammer and tosses them aside. Rhodes now has a golden shovel in hand and he seems to like it. Jose the Assistant tries to hit Cody with the taser, but he just ends up with a golden shovel to the face instead!

Andrade floors Cody with a step up splash to the outside! With the action spilling back in the ring, El Idolo wedges a chair against the face of a cornered Cody. He sizes him up and hits a vicious running knee right into the face of the American Nightmare. 1, 2… Cody just barely kicks out. 

Now deciding he does want a table introduced, Andrade pulls one out and sets it up against the corner. A running charge by Cody is reversed into a hiptoss that puts him through that table! Andrade gets yet another table from below the ring. He has Cody draped across the table as he heads to the top rope. However, Rhodes is able to cause Andrade to be crotched across the top turnbuckle! He now heads up to the top rope, but Andrade pushes him off. 

Meanwhile, a masked person wearing an AEW sweater slides into the ring, unmasking to reveal Brandi Rhodes. She’s got lighter fluid and she just sprays it all over the table. You know what comes next… the table is lit up!

With the table on fire, Cody hits an avalanche reverse DDT through the fiery table (that he takes the brunt of the fiery impact of, by the way) to score the victory in this Atlanta Street Fight.

Cody Rhodes def. Andrade El Idolo via pinfall – Reverse DDT through Flaming Table (18:15)

This Friday on Rampage (12/3/21)

  • TNT Championship: Sammy Guevara vs. Tony Nese
  • Jade Cargill vs. Janai Kai
  • PAC & Penta El Zero M vs. FTR

Next Week on Dynamite (12/8/21)

  • Bryan Danielson vs. John Silver
  • Jamie Hayter vs. Riho
  • Dynamite Dozen Battle Royal (Final Two compete for the Dynamite Diamond Ring at Winter is Coming)

Winter is Coming 2021 (12/15/21)

  • AEW World Championship: “Hangman” Adam Page vs. Bryan Danielson
  • Dynamite Diamond Ring Finals

The Last Word

Of course, let’s lead off with the big elephant in the room, namely the MJF portion of the post-match festivities following CM Punk vs. Lee Moriarty. While I felt last week’s promo battle lived up to expectations, I wasn’t really feeling the same way this week. Mainly because of a particular thing Maxwell said: “you’re the best in the world at getting into Britt Baker’s pants”. It’s understood that MJF’s whole shtick is going for the lowest hanging fruit possible in order to get reactions from fans, but I’ve never been comfortable with “you sleep with so-and-so” and reducing women as nothing more than objects being used as a go-to line for cheap heat. We saw an uncomfortable amount of it during the Inner Circle/American Top Team feud, and now it’s front and centre once again.

Keep in mind that the aforementioned Britt Baker is not only the current AEW Women’s World Champion, but she’s one of the most popular wrestlers of the entire company, so it’s not really a good look when you have her being the basis of a wrestler making cheap sex jokes about her as a way to score heat.

I enjoyed last week’s MJF/Punk promo battle, but even that had the bit about Punk implying that MJF would need to marry a future daughter of Tony Khan to get ahead. AEW already faces quite a bit of scrutiny for how they handle the quantity of women’s matches on both Dynamite and Rampage, so I think there’s quite a bit of ways to go for them when it comes to how the women are treated on their shows. The TBS Championship Tournament and feuds like Hikaru Shida vs. Serena Deeb are a good start, but stuff like MJF’s comments about Britt and the Inner Circle mocking Paige VanZant, as well as having only one women’s match per Dynamite and Rampage show that there’s definitely room for improvement.

Circling back to the promo, I thought MJF’s line about being like Bret in Canada and CM Punk in Chicago when Dynamite rolls into Long Island next week was something that actually worked. It fits so well with his character being an overly egotistical dick that he’d make such bold comparisons about himself. It’s just a shame that it’ll be largely overshadowed by Max playing the “cheap misogyny” and “I’ll kill your dog” cards.

On a more positive note, the in-ring action was once again excellent. CM Punk vs. Lee Moriarty made for a great showcase just how Moriarty can go with the best of them. Even with the outcome never in doubt, Moriarty was able to push Punk to the limit and prove himself worthy of the hype he’s gotten recently. While he’s not officially one of the Four Pillars that AEW has advertised in recent months, Lee Moriarty is making a strong case for becoming a fixture of the company for years to come.

The Kris Statlander/Ruby Soho delivered in more ways than one, giving both women a chance to shine on the big stage that is the TBS Championship Tournament. Statlander kept pace with the veteran Soho and looked like she was about to score a major upset at various points of the match. While she was on the losing end of this match, Statlander certainly proved that she was more than capable of hitting another gear for big matches like this. A title belt — whether the TBS Championship or the AEW Women’s Title — is most certainly in this alien’s future.

Sting/Darby vs. Gunn Club was a fun tag match that highlighted just how well AEW has been using Sting for matches like these. With Sting having now been in the company for a year, he’s been brought in and utilized by AEW in ways to ensure that his aura and stature is never in doubt.

The main event Atlanta Street Fight was your standard popcorn-fun brawl around the crowd and ringside area. Cody and Andrade definitely beat the hell out of one another to the entertainment of the Atlanta crowd. I’m a sucker for street fight-style matches, so this one was right up my alley. That being said, the finish was a bit odd, mainly due to the fact that it was Cody who got the worst of the flaming table spot, yet he’s the one who got the pin. It did make for a memorable finish to this week’s show, though.

Marc Quill is the editor of RingCrashers, GateCrashers’ home for all your All Elite Wrestling and indie wrestling needs. He’s also the web novelist behind Skye Emery: Bluebird, which you can read here. You can chat with him about wrestling, comics, and stuff in general on @MarcQuill on Twitter.

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AEW Dynamite Recap | 11/24/21 | From Chicago, IL

I hope my American readers had a happy Thanksgiving long weekend as we welcome you back to another week of Dynamite action. With excellent matches and a long-awaited promo battle, let’s take look back at the pre-Thanksgiving edition of the show.

Previously on All Elite Wrestling…

Results for 11/17/21 Dynamite (Episode 111)

  • In a pre-taped video, Kenny Omega said that he’d be taking time away from AEW to “fix” things that need to be fixed — in reality, he’s taking time off to recover from a series of injuries he’s sustained.
  • “Hangman” Adam Page’s AEW World Championship celebration was cut short by an antagonistic Bryan Danielson, who dressed him down for not being ready for a fight. Page took exception and got into a brawl with Danielson.
  • Bryan Danielson def. Evil Uno via referee stoppage (6:11) with the triangle choke. After the match, Danielson promised to kick the heads in of the rest of the Dark Order, starting with Colt Cabana next week.
  • A confrontation between Eddie Kingston and 2point0 ended with Kingston challenging Daniel Garcia to step up to him.
  • Orange Cassidy & Tomohiro Ishii, representing CHAOS def. The Butcher and the Blade via pinfall (11:19) when Ishii got the pin on the Blade.
  • Nyla Rose def. Hikaru Shida via submission (11:06) to advance in the TBS Championship Tournament. During the match, Serena Deeb got involved and attacked Shida outside the ring.
  • MJF bragged about his win over Darby Allin at Full Gear and angered the Norfolk crowd until CM Punk interrupted. MJF introduced himself to Punk, who simply ignored him and walked away without saying a word.
  • The Gunn Club challenged Darby Allin to a fight in the near future.
  • Bobby Fish and Adam Cole threw down the gauntlet to Jurassic Express for a tag team match on Rampage.
  • Dante Martin & Lio Rush def. The Acclaimed via pinfall (9:30) after Dante pinned Bowens to get the victory. Post-match, Team Taz once again extended their offer for Dante to join them.
  • Sammy Guevara def. Jay Lethal via pinfall (12:52) to retain the TNT Championship with the Go To Hell. The Inner Circle appeared after the match to celebrate with Sammy to end the show.

Results for 11/19/21 Rampage (Episode 15)

  • Darby Allin def. Billy Gunn via pinfall (8:37) after two Coffin Drops. Post-match, the Gunn Club beat down Darby and Sting.
  • QT Marshall challenged CM Punk to a match in front of his hometown fans on Dynamite next week.
  • Jade Cargill def. Red Velvet via pinfall (9:00) to advance in the TBS Championship Tournament.
  • Jurassic Express def. Bobby Fish and Adam Cole via submission (15:29) after Jungle Boy made Fish tap out to the Snare Trap. The finish came when the Young Bucks’ attempted interference was foiled by Christian Cage, which led to Cole leaving Fish at the mercy of Jurassic Express.

It’s Thanksgiving Eve. You Know What That Means.

Direct from Chicago’s Wintrust Arena, it’s a special pre-Thanksgiving edition of AEW Dynamite. With our usual hosts Jim Ross, Excalibur, and Tony Schiavone, we go right to the action with the hometown hero.

CM Punk & MJF’s War of Words

Rather than give a blow-by-blow recap of this incredible opening salvo between CM Punk and MJF, I’ll let the segment speak for itself as AEW has posted the segment in full, so you can see it below:

Match 1: CM Punk vs. QT Marshall

CM Punk goes for a high-risk elbow drop on QT Marshall (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

The Story So Far

This match was set up on Rampage last Friday, with QT promising to defeat the unbeaten CM Punk in front of his hometown crowd. This is, of course, the first-ever match between the two.

The Match

It’s CM with the early advantage as he rocks QT with repeated scoop slams. CM with a lateral press and gets a two count. While in a chinlock, QT manages to back Punk right where Nick Comoroto is standing at ringside. Comoroto grabs at Punk’s leg, but he’s caught by referee Paul Turner, who ejects him and Aaron Solo from the ringside area! Marshall is at the ramp as he tells his boys to leave the ring. Back in the ring, Punk again with a scoop slam on QT. With a jab, Marshall is able to take advantage for a bit, but his fortunes take a reversal as Punk eventually comes back. Hard irish whip to the corner causes Marshall to take a hard fall. 

QT with another jab as he stomps on Punk. Only a two-count. Punk fights out of a chinlock, leading to a clothesline to the outside. On the apron, Punk hits the clothesline on Marshall to send us to picture-in-picture.

Returning to live action on Dynamite, QT again has the advantage, applying a neck crank on Punk. The hometown hero stands to fight out of it, but he’s floored by a forearm and a Liger Bomb from QT Marshall. 1, 2… NO! QT starts heeling it up to the Chicago crowd, then trash talking Punk. That gets him a kick to the head for his troubles. Punk starts to mount his offense. Neckbreaker, then the knee strike to QT in the corner. Short-armed clothesline soon follows, and then the Macho Man Elbow from the top rope. Punk motions that it’s time to put someone to sleep… and that somebody is QT Marshall. The GTS connects! 1, 2, 3! This one’s over.

CM Punk def. QT Marshall via pinfall – GTS (11:08) 

Jurassic-Sized Momentum

https://mobile.twitter.com/AEW/status/1463684225882804230

Roving reporter Tony Schiavone is standing by with Jurassic Express and Christian Cage. They talk about how their recent successes has led to momentum being on their side, and now that Jungle Boy and Luchasaurus are the number-one ranked tag team in AEW, Christian is going to make sure that they become the next AEW World Tag Team Champions. Luchasaurus offers an approving roar to end the interview.

Here’s Coffee In Your Eye

https://mobile.twitter.com/AEW/status/1463685123468050436

Eddie Kingston is indeed at catering, enjoying himself a cake, when he’s approached by 2point0 and Daniel Garcia. Jeff Parker and Matt Lee talk about how they read Eddie’s Players Tribune article, interpreting it as an article about a guy who’s satisfied with where he is, not a guy who’s hungry any longer. The duo say that they’re here to help Eddie since he couldn’t help his friend Jon Moxley. The mere mention of Mox causes Eddie to flip as Daniel Garcia tosses hot coffee in his face! Eddie is in a rage as he flips a table and comes at 2point0 and Garcia with a fork.

Match 2: Colten & Billy Gunn of the Gunn Club vs. Bear Country (Bear Boulder & Bear Bronson)

The unbeaten Gunn Club continued their winning ways on Dynamite (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

The Story So Far

There really isn’t any pre-establishing story here, other than the fact that the Gunn Club are currently undefeated and look to continue that here. They’re also fresh off of an encounter with Darby Allin and Sting on Rampage the previous Friday which ended with the Gunn Club standing tall over the two.

The Match

Ever the opportunists, the Gunn Club hit a cheap shot on the Bears before the bell can even ring. Bear Boulder hoists Billy Gunn over him and throws him down. On the outside, Bear Bronson is sent crashing into the steel steps. Colten Gunn takes Bear Boulder into the ring and is thrown with an over-the-shoulder suplex. Boulder has Colten right where he wants him. He runs against the ropes and is tripped up by Austin Gunn while the referee is not looking. Colten takes advantage and hits Colt 45 to score the win and continue the Gunn Club’s unbeaten run.

The Gunn Club def. Bear Country via pinfall – Colt 45 by Colten Gunn (1:36)

Post-Match

The Gunn Club’s celebration is interrupted by the music of Darby Allin, which signals the arrival of Darby’s mentor, Sting. Austin Gunn tries to attack Sting at the stage, but he’s taken down by Darby, who flies in like a missile and crushes Austin with a high-impact charge! The facepaint-clad duo rush to the ring and send Colten and Billy Gunn on a retreat, to get a bit of revenge for last week.

Battle of the Belts

A short promo hyping the January 8th, 2022 “Saturday Fight Night” special on TNT, titled Battle of the Belts, airs. It goes down live from the Bojangles Coliseum in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Who Are AEW’s True Best Friends?

https://mobile.twitter.com/AEW/status/1463687264488284163

With the Young Bucks off this week, it’s Adam Cole & Bobby Fish who get the chance to tell Brandon Cutler how to operate the camera. Cole talks about the bad fortunes he and his Elite buddies have had over the past few weeks, with the Bucks still recovering from their injuries. He hypes up the fact that he and Fish are more than just tag partners, and that they’re true-blue friends. The Best Friends (Chuck Taylor, Orange Cassidy, and Wheeler YUTA) walk past the formerly-undisputed partners and have a dispute with them. Cole makes fun of the fact that Trent is not there, noting that their team name should just be “Best Friend”. He then challenges Orange and YUTA to fight him and Bobby Fish.

Dante FTW?

https://mobile.twitter.com/AEW/status/1463688180973154307

In a boardroom area backstage, Team Taz are with Dante Martin & Lio Rush, going over the contract for Dante to sign so he can be a part of the Team. Taz complains about Lio’s presence in the room, to which the LBO replies that he’s there to look over whatever the contract that’s been handed to Dante is. Taz says that it’s nothing more than business. Dante takes the pen from Lio and signs the contract, apparently joining Team Taz. He takes some chips from Hook before leaving with Team Taz.

Match 3: Jamie Hayter vs. Thunder Rosa (TBS Championship Tournament Quarterfinals)

Thunder Rosa pulled out all the stops to secure a berth in the TBS Championship Tournament Semifinals (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

The Story So Far

Jamie Hayter defeated the Dark Order’s Anna Jay to advance to the Quarterfinals, whereas Thunder Rosa was given a first-round bye due to being one of the top wrestlers in the AEW Women’s rankings. AEW Women’s Champion Dr. Britt Baker DMD has thrown her support behind Hayter to become the first TBS Champion.

The Match

Instant lockup between Rosa and Hayter to start off as the bell sounds. They exchange slams before Hayter takes advantage with a cheap shot. Some slaps before Hayter sends Rosa to the outside. Attempted Irish whip is reversed as Rosa sends Hayter into the barricade. Hayter rams Rosa into the apron and then the barricade. Rosa fights back with a chop as she sends Hayter into the ring. Hayter takes a momentary advantage, but Rosa gets her good with punches to the ribs. 

Kidney kicks by Hayter to the ribs of Thunder Rosa allows for a brief burst of momentum. Rosa fights out and hits repeated running attacks to the rope. Back outside and Rosa is punishing Hayter, hitting a running dropkick to the outside. Suplex to the unforgiving ringside floor stings Hayter. Rosa attempts a running apron attack, but that’s reversed as Hayter catches her and rams her right into the ring post. The match goes to picture-in-picture at this point.

Back on Dynamite with Hayter setting up Rosa on the top rope for some sort of an avalanche move. After a struggle, Rosa fights out of it and follows that up with a shotgun dropkick!. Both women are at opposite corners, but it’s Thunder Rosa who takes over with two dropkicks to the cornered Hayter. 1, 2…. KICKOUT! Suplex attempt is blocked as Hayter turns it into a backbreaker. Only two on that move. Rosa escapes out of a Jamie Hayter chinlock with repeated shots to the ribs. Things break down into a hockey fight between Rosa and Hayter.

Peruvian Necktie locked in, but Rebel and Britt Baker interfere in the match. While Rebel distracts the referee, Britt breaks the hold and ultimately ends up hitting a superkick on Jamie Hayter instead of her intended target! Casadora turns into a victory roll… 1, 2, 3!

Thunder Rosa def. Jamie Hayter via pinfall — Casadora Victory Roll (10:38)

Post-Match

Jamie Hayter is a bit upset at Dr. Britt’s failed interference, shoving her away then walking off alone.

Square-Head?

Chris Jericho is being interviewed when 2point0 and Daniel Garcia interrupt him, still bragging about their hot coffee attack on Eddie Kingston. Jericho mocks them for incurring Kingston’s wrath, then making fun of Matt Lee’s “square” head. He tells the trio that if they ever interrupt him again, he says he’ll knock their teeth down their throat. 2point0 and Garcia walk off as Jeff Parker tells Jericho to “watch his mouth”.

A Ruined Friendsgiving

A Happy Friendsgiving from the AEW Women’s World Champion (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

Backstage, Dr. Britt Baker is with Rebel and Tony Schiavone with a Thanksgiving dinner set up. Britt talks about how even with Thunder Rosa defeating Jamie Hayter, she’s thankful she’s still the AEW Women’s Champion. Schiavone is the bearer of bad news, though, rolling footage of Riho not being officially eliminated during All Out’s Casino Battle Royale.

With that in mind, Tony Khan has booked a “Black Friday Deal Match” on Rampage between Riho and Dr. Britt. The catch is that if Riho wins, she gets a shot at the AEW Women’s Championship. Britt’s pissed at the match being made, stating that Schiavone has ruined Halloween and Thanksgiving. She tells him he won’t be invited to the Christmas party.

Match 4: Bryan Danielson vs. Colt Cabana

With an aggressive new attitude, the American Dragon prevailed over his former best friend Colt Cabana (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

The Story So Far

While this is the latest stop in the American Dragon’s warpath against the Dark Order, the connection between him and opponent Colt Cabana goes way back. Way back in the early 2000s, Colt and Danielson were travel buddies as they toured across the country. Their journeys together was the subject of the 2009 documentary The Wrestling Road Diaries. Now, they meet in the ring as Colt finds himself the next target of Danielson’s quest to vie for “Hangman” Adam Page’s AEW World Title by leaving the ruins of the Dark Order in his wake.

The Match

Back and forth action between Bryan and Cabana to get started in this match. Cabana escapes an armbar attempt by grabbing onto the ropes and it’s back to square one. More jockeying for position with arm stretches until Colt attempts a Romero Special. Danielson uses his submission prowess by escaping and hitting Cabana hard with kicks. Danielson mantains control as the fans chant for Colt Cabana. Attempted running dropkick is sidestepped by Cabana as this gives him a chance to mount an offense. Chops and punches by Cabana on Danielson, finishing with the bionic elbow to floor the American Dragon.

Flying Apple misses wildly and Danielson hits the German suplex to the booing of the Chicago fans. Danielson works over Cabana in the corner before attempting a super back suplex. Colt fights out of it and sends Danielson to the floor. Moonsault by Colt gets a very close near-fall. Short-arm elbow strikes by Colt, but he’s tripped up by Danielson. The American Dragon has him in position for the trapped arm stomps to the head. Danielson kicks Colt’s head in repeatedly rather aggressively. He transitions into another move, flexing arrogantly to the dismay of the crowd. LeBell Lock cinched in tight and Colt taps out to end this match.

Bryan Danielson def. Colt Cabana via submission – LeBell Lock (5:09)

Post-Match

Danielson keeps his submission on tight for a few more seconds as the announcers talk about a post-match interview happening after the commercial. Just before the break, Danielson points at a broken tooth on the mat, apparently belonging to Colt Cabana.

Who’s The Real Coward?

The AEW World Champion “Hangman” Adam Page has had enough of Bryan Danielson’s cruelty against the Dark Order (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

We return with Danielson still in the ring. He talks about how he had a different reaction just a few months ago from this Chicago crowd, calling them “fickle” for booing him tonight. He boasts about not only kicking Colt Cabana’s head in, but also kicking his tooth out. Bryan says that next week in Atlanta, he challenges whoever from the Dark Order is from there, as he’ll kick their heads in. This, as Bryan says, is going to lead to the “ultimate head-kicking” when he inevitably kicks “Hangman” Page’s head in.

That, of course, brings out the AEW World Champion to respond to Danielson’s remarks (surprisingly, without the usual dry wit of his lower-third graphic). Page says that Danielson did indeed do as he promised to Colt Cabana (i.e. kicking his head in), but that’s where it ends. That’s because Page is challenging Danielson to fight him in Chicago for the AEW World Title.

Danielson makes an excuse to not have the match, citing that it’s “coward shit” that Page would want to compete just after he had already wrestled. Page says that it’s fine that they won’t have the title match, but he’s not leaving Chicago without a fight. He even offers Danielson to take the first shot, putting his hands behind his back.

“Don’t you insult me like that…” Danielson says before slapping Page right in his face. The two proceed to fight each other. Hangman gets the advantage after a boot from the apron, and he goes for the Buckshot Lariat. Danielson manages to escape, perhaps with the fear of defeat at the hands of the Hangman being put into him.

Match 5: FTR (Dax Harwood & Cash Wheeler), Andrade El Idolo, and Malakai Black vs. The Lucha Brothers (Penta El Zero M & Rey Fenix), Cody Rhodes, and PAC

Malakai Black unleashes a wicked knee to the head of Rey Fenix in Dynamite’s big main event (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

The Story So Far

What started as a war between Malakai Black and Cody Rhodes has managed to rope in the rivalry between FTR and the AEW Tag Champions, as well as PAC and Andrade El Idolo. The latest chapter of this conflict took place at Full Gear when the kinda-sorta team of PAC and Cody defeated Andrade and Black in tag team action, while the Lucha Brothers successfully defended their Tag Team Titles against FTR.

The Match

Cody Rhodes & Dax Harwood to start us off in this massive tag match. Dax corners Cody briefly before he’s told to back up. Now it’s the two men at a stalemate. Dropdown right hand by Cody is followed by the powerslam. Cody takes off his belt and tosses it to the crowd. PAC tags in and there’s a commotion in the crowd as a fan throws Cody’s belt back into the ring! Meanwhile, PAC and Dax are caught in a chopping duel that ends as the two exchange running strikes at one another. Back suplex by Dax allows for him to tag in Cash Wheeler into the match.Wheeler with the arm ring followed by a celebratory backflip. PAC kicks him in the face before tagging in Penta El Zero M. Diving dropkick hits Wheeler right in the groin.

Exchange of strikes ends with a kick in the face. Cero Miedo taunt as Penta runs off the ropes. He’s met with a vicious lariat by Cash Wheeler, who tags Andrade in. The cover… 1, 2, NO!  Andrade’s suplex is reversed into an inside cradle for a near fall. Penta escapes as he tags in brother Rey Fenix. Bottom rope hurricanrana followed by a dropkick party and he drags Andrade back into his corner. Death Triangle takes over with a triumverate of kicks to Andrade. Cody Rhodes tags himself in with the fans naturally jeering at him. 

The American Nightmare finds himself in no man’s land as the heel team starts beating his ass in their corner while the referee’s distaracted. The Chicago crowd naturally are loving every single moment of this. Malakai Black is the legal man, but Cody quickly tags Rey Fenix back in. Double cutter on FTR by Fenix, followed by the escalara-into-tijeras to Andrade. Fenix strikes Black down with a kick barrage, but FTR and Tully Blanchard stop him at the pass to allow Malakai to take advantage as we go to our final commercial break of the evening.

Dynamite returns with Cash Wheeler trying to rip away at Rey Fenix’s mask (also, Andrade’s lost his pants, now sporting tights). Fenix takes out Wheeler with a crescent kick to the head, which gives him time to tag in Penta. Andrade is in for the heel team. Penta performs the casadora on Andrade before launching himself at FTR and hitting a double DDT on them. Penta counters Andrade at the corner and lands a backstabber for a near fall. PAC tags in and he’s on fire, unleashing a wild flurry of offense on the heels. He manages to take down all four men with relative ease. Now focusing on Andrade, PAC is on a roll until he’s literally rolled by Cash Wheeler into a nice backbreaker.

Things break down as both teams take turns hitting their best moves at one another, which ends with Malakai destroying Fenix with a brutal knee strike. Cody hits a modified brainbuster on Malakai. He has his sights set on Andrade, but ends up superkicking PAC instead! Andrade with the.headlock elbow drop on Cody as he runs full speed at PAC. The Bastard springs back up and hits a beautfiul belly-to-belly exploder onto the corner! With everybody down, we get Arn Anderson and Tully Blanchard confronting each other in the ring as the fans go berserk over this showdown unfolding!

Jose the Assistant tries to get involved, but he gets punched by both Arn and Tully, who resume standing off. FTR join their mentor in cornering Arn, but Rey Fenix takes out Wheeler and Harwood with a flying splash. Penta with slingblades for both FTR members. The Lucha Brothers clothesline FTR to the outside, then taking them out with dives to the outside.

In the ring, PAC has Andrade set up for the Black Arrow, but Malakai Black spits the black mist in his face! Hammerlock DDT by Andrade on PAC right as Malakai kicks Cody on the apron. 1, 2, 3, and this wild main event has reached its conclusion.

Malakai Black, Andrade El Idolo & FTR def. PAC, Cody Rhodes, and the Lucha Brothers via pinfall – Hammerlock DDT by Andrade El Idolo on PAC (16:13)

After The Fact

As this Dynamite recap is coming after Rampage due to Thanksgiving, let’s look over what happened on this week’s show quickly:

  • Adam Cole & Bobby Fish def. Orange Cassidy & Wheeler YUTA via pinfall (12:52) after Fish hit the avalanche Falcon Arrow on YUTA for the win.
  • Tony Nese challenged Sammy Guevara for the TNT Championship, then attacking him with a blindside cheapshot.
  • Black Friday Deal: Riho def. Dr. Britt Baker via pinfall (11:11) to earn an AEW Women’s Championship shot.
  • Eddie Kingston def. Daniel Garcia via pinfall (14:58) with the uraken backfist. Post-match, 2point0 immediately beat up Kingston, but Chris Jericho stood up from the commentary table to chase Parker and Lee off. Kingston, however, didn’t seem too happy with Jericho’s intervention.

Next Wednesday on Dynamite (12/1/21)

  • Kris Statlander vs. Ruby Soho (TBS Championship Tournament Quarterfinals)
  • Atlanta Street Fight: Cody Rhodes vs. Andrade El Idolo
  • Bryan Danielson vs. Alan Angels
  • The Gunn Club (Billy & Colten Gunn) vs. Darby Allin & Sting

The Last Word

Fans didn’t have to wait long for the hotly-anticipated CM Punk/MJF promo battle, and the encounter here certainly lived up to expectations. While MJF had some good digs at Punk by mocking his failed UFC career and comparing him to John Cena and Triple H, it was ultimately Punk who seemed to score the upper hand with his salvo of words. The hometown favorite responded to MJF by calling him a “less famous Miz” and ultimately stating that Britt Baker has replaced him as one of the four pillars. It was a solid twenty-minute opener.

AEW typically isn’t wont to open their shows with lengthy mic promos, so on the off chance that they do, it has to prove itself to be worthy of kicking off the show on a high note. Punk and MJF’s verbal sparring match delivered on that regard.

On the in-ring side of things, Thunder Rosa and Jamie Hayter had arguably the match of the evening with their TBS Championship Tournament match. The match was, appropriately, a hard-hitting affair with Rosa and Hayter seriously laying into each other for a chance at the TBS Championship. Though the match-ending sequence with Britt Baker’s interference was a bit clunky, it at least served some story purpose by further creating a divide between Hayter and Britt.

Whether it’s in Ring of Honor or WWE, Bryan Danielson has proven himself incredible at playing the bad guy, and this two-week old heel turn in anticipation of a match with Hangman Page is no exception. His stretch of brutally beating members of the Dark Order in their hometowns is an easy way to establish Danielson as a bastard heel. And the beauty of it is that it’s not that far of a stretch for this incarnation of the American Dragon to shift into a more aggressive heel persona. The brief interaction Danielson had with Page left just enough to leave fans wanting to see the title match between the two.

The shocking moment of Dante Martin apparently ditching Lio Rush and opting to join Team Taz creates a lot of story opportunities from that singular moment. Does Lio attempt to bring Dante’s brother Darius or even the Sydal brothers to counter Team Taz? Or is this an elaborate swerve with Lio & Dante pulling one over on the FTW Squad? Wouldn’t be the first time AEW had a babyface duping the heel with a little contract switcharoo shenanigans.

The eight-man tag main event was a great way to close out the show with all eight competitors getting their chance to show off their stuff. While the will he/won’t he turn saga of Cody Rhodes seems to be as unclear as ever with its final destination, the fans appeared to have made up their minds when it comes with how they feel about the American Nightmare. The Chicago faithful were not shy in sharing their vitriol towards Cody, right down to a small incident with his weight belt being thrown back into the ring (luckily not hurting any of the wrestlers or referee Aubrey Edwards).

It’ll be interesting to see what happens on the next Dynamite, which will be in Cody’s home state and feature him in an Atlanta Street Fight against Andrade El Idolo. Will we see Cody get booed in front of a hometown crowd? Or will there be some home cooking involved? We’ll soon see.

Marc Quill is the editor of RingCrashers, GateCrashers’ home for all your All Elite Wrestling and indie wrestling needs. He’s also the web novelist behind Skye Emery: Bluebird, which you can read here. You can chat with him about wrestling, comics, and stuff in general on @MarcQuill on Twitter.

Categories
Uncategorized

AEW Dark Dork Review, week of 11/15

Hey, everyone, it’s time for more Dark Dork Review. Welcome to Elevation, where we welcome our new champion Adam Page, and to start off our first match that AEW put out in the Hangman era, we have…

Gunn Club vs Nasty Russ, T-Money, and Shawn Cook: OH COME ON. They even have a Gunn-defeated sign they took out to the ring. They’re just working me now. Billy Ass and the Ass Boys are in competition against some local talent in trios action, and unfortunately, they continue to win. I wish Darby Allin the best in his competition against Billy, if only to make someone with the last name of Gunn taste defeat.

Nyla Rose, THe Bunny, and Emi Sakura w/ Vickie Guerrero, Lulu Pencil, and Mei Surgua vs Riho, Ryo Mizunami, and Syke Blue: Wow that’s a long introduction. The Bunny tags into the Killer Queens trio this week, and Skyle Blue returns to Elevation. We get a very fun moment where Ryo and Skye lock up Emi’s arms and Riho gets on Emi’s back to pose. Emi returns the favor by posing with Emi and Lulu after crashing into Riho in the corner. Skye Blue attempts to get Nyla in a hurricanrana, but ends up a victim of the Beast Bomb after Nyla catches her. Whoops.

Hardy Family Office vs Dark Order: With the Butcher out on tour right now, the Blade is teaming with Isiah Kassidy and Matt Hardy against Evil Uno, Stu Grayson, and Alan Angels this week. Mark Henry and the rest of the booth have fun calling out Matt Hardy for being a carny POS, and well…at one point Stu Grayson is in the corner and Hardy yells something. Tony says that he yelled “Stomp him out,” but I have ears. I know what I heard, and what I heard was “pound that ass.” Isiah Kassidy ends up getting the win here with a quick rollup pin of Alan Angels.

Andrade el Idolo w/ Jose vs Lord Crewe: Paul Wight does some armchair psychology here with regards to Andrade’s mask. Lord Crewe, who has a background in bare knuckle fighting, is making his AEW debut. Crewe makes the mistake of turning his back on Andrade, and gets a big boot to the face for his trouble, then gets the pin from El Idolo.

Ruby Soho w/ Billy Roc vs Charlie Kruel: The hometown hero this week, Ruby gets a big cheer from the crowd when she comes in with her original trainer. She gets a solid win off a stepup kick, and has a great hug with Billy Roc.

John Silver vs QT Marshall: The meat man’s in action tonight, and in rarity, QT Marshall does not have any goons with him. As the match starts, QT rolls out of the ring and grabs a mic. He insists that he doesn’t care if Johnny’s hungry, but he demands respect. His reward for that is a chorus of “QT Sucks” chants. Johnny Hungee wins off of the Spin Doctor slam, and everyone’s happy. Sorry, QT, but it’s true.

Dark starts off this week with some Team Taz action from Milwaukee, recorded the night before Full Gear.

Powerhouse Hobbs w/ Hook vs Jaysin Strife: Jayin Strife is claimed to be another victim of Powerhouse Hobbs, and the neon-green-wearing wrestler gets a nice chant of “Hobbs is going to kill you.” So nice the crowd is into it. Hobbs lays out Strife over one of the top ring posts and works Jaysin over before crashing him into another ring post and hitting him with a spinebuster. He lifts Strife off before the last count, and gets the win off the torture rack.

Anrdade el Idolo vs Jah-C: Andrade gets in action against Jah-C, better known as Frontman JAH in indie circuits, and Andrade gets a very quick win off a big kick that transitions into a submission.

Shawn Spears & Wardlow vs Renny D and Arik Cannon:Mark Henry joins the booth for this match, and the Pinnacle’s enforcers go up against Renny D and Arik Cannon, the latter of whom was actually a trainer for Top Flight! Shawn Spears gets a little ticked at Renny D and goes for the chair, but Wardlow, his accountabilibuddy, takes it away from him. Wardlow gets tagged in and takes a commanding performance and powerbombs Renny D into oblivion with a threepeat. Arik Cannon runs in and gets powerbombed for his trouble. Wardlow gives Renny D another powerbomb, and pins Renny. After the bell, Shawn Spears gives Renny D a helping of C4 and tries to hype Wardlow.

Ruby Soho vs Hyan: As Ruby makes her way into the ring, Excalibur mocks Taz’s impromptu karaoke sessions during Ruby’s entrances. She gets a quick win over Hyan with the No Future kick here.

Too Fast Too Fuego vs Kit Sackett & Brandon Gore: I want to thank Tony Khan, the wrestling gods, and the Sun for providing us with this tag team continuing to appear. We again get commentary on the weird bruising on his neck. Brandon Gore tries to tear at Fuego Dos’ mask, but Aubrey correctly prompts him to stop. Fuego Del Sol lands the Tornado DDT, and our favorite tag team gets their third win in three tries!

Alan 5 Angels & Colt Cabana vs The Acclaimed: Taz insists that Anna Jay needs to get out from the Dark Order, and the Acclaimed dumps on Prince for the cheapest heat in the history of wrestling. Apparently, Max Caster didn’t know who Prince was, according to Ricky Starks? Truly chilling. This is a fun tag match and the Dark Order gets their hits in, but a cheap shot from the boom box gets the Acclaimed the win.

Riho, Kris Statlander, and Ryo Mizunami vs Nyla Rose, the Bunny, and Emi Sakura: Before the bell even rings on this one, a brawl breaks out, which takes several minutes before it can even start. Once it does, we settle into another fun trios match. Our faces get the win here, with Kris Statlander getting the win off the Big Bang Theory on Emi Sakura.

JD Drake, Ryan Nemeth, Aaron Solo, and Nick Comoroto w/ QT Marshall vs Lee Johnson, Brock Anderson w/ Arn Anderson & Varsity Blondes: We get a fun mix of some of the lower card here, but the real interesting thing I want to see here is Arn Anderson unloading on QT Marshall. And we get that! We get a big fun mess of a tag match, and towards the end, QT Marshall tried to bully Julia Hart and Arn Anderson mimicked pulling a gun on him. While QT was distracted, Julia slapped him. Our boys from the Nightmare Family and Varsity Blondes win off a big frog splash.

John Silver vs Pretty Peter Avalon: John Silver? Peter Avalon? What is this, January 2021? Sadly, we do not get the Sensual Sledge’s return, but Peter Avalon is back on Dark after a long absence. Avalon makes a strong showing here, and despite Taz’s best wishes for Silver to lose as karmic retribution for his bad flight habits, he wins off of the Spin Doctor.

Sonny Kiss vs Adam Grace: The Concrete Rose returns to action against Wisconsonite Adam Grace, and Adam Grace demands the crowd cheer from him while he has Sonny in a headlock. The crowd does not oblige, and gets the win off of a stunner while doing the splits! She poses over Grace while Aubrey counts it out.

Pres10 Vance vs Mikey Wild: Taz on commentary says that 10’s biggest weakness is his loyalty to the Dark Order. I’d disagree, considering that what makes him endearing, and his problem is comical amounts of cocaine. But that’s neither here or there, and 10 gets the win over Mikey Wild with the full nelson.

Scorpio Sky w/ Ethan Page vs Craven Knyte: Local Minnesotan Craven Knyte takes on half of the Men of the Year while his other half takes a seat at the booth. I missed my horrible fashion husbands on Dark. Taz and Ethan Page have a little love fest complementing each other, while Scorpio gets to work and gets the quick win. While talking about their friendship, Ethan Page reveals that as a true bonding experience, they wax each other’s eyebrows. Alright? Love this.

That’s all we have this week, for the fallout from Full Gear. Until next time, we’ll be checking in from Virginia!

Categories
Wrestling

AEW Dynamite Recap | 11/17/21 | From Norfolk, VA

With a memorable Full Gear left in the rear-view window, it’s onwards to the next “phase” of All Elite Wrestling, starting with this week’s Dynamite from the home turf of our new AEW World Champion. Featuring the American Dragon sharpening his teeth once again, more impressive tag team action from Lio Rush & Dante Martin, and CM Punk saying a lot without saying anything at all, let’s dive right in and run down this week’s episode. But first…

Previously on All Elite Wrestling…

Dynamite Results for 11/10/21 (Episode 110)

  • Bryan Danielson def. Rocky Romero via submission (10:51) with the Tequila Sunrise. 
  • American Top Team & Men of the Year ambushed the Inner Circle before an interview segment and brutally beat them down. Dan Lambert, Ethan Page, and Scorpio Sky put Chris Jericho through a table, followed by Lambert applying the Walls of Jericho on him.
  • Tay Conti, Anna Jay, & Thunder Rosa def. Dr. Britt Baker DMD, Rebel (not Reba), & Jamie Hayter via pinfall (7:58) when Conti planted Rebel with the DDTay for the win.
  • Jungle Boy def. Anthony Bowens via submission (10:07) with the Snare Trap. Post-match, Bobby Fish attacked Jungle Boy before being run off by Christian Cage & Luchasaurus.
  • Adam Cole referred to Fish as his best friend to the Young Bucks, who stated that there’s no disputing that this is the era of the Elite. Cole then suggested that Fish can face Jungle Boy on Rampage to soften him up for Saturday.
  • Wardlow def. Wheeler YUTA via pinfall (2:14) with a very easy victory. Post-match, The Hardy Family Office beat up the Best Friends, ending with Matt Hardy hitting a Twist of Fate on Orange Cassidy with his head wedged between a chair.
  • CM Punk & Eddie Kingston were held back by several AEW wrestlers and officials in the parking lot before they could fight one another.
  • Dante Martin & Lio Rush def. Matt Sydal & Lee Moriarty via pinfall (10:27) in one hell of a showing by all four competitors. Dante got the win with his Nosedive double moonsault on Moriarty.
  • PAC def. Dax Harwood via submission (13:59) by way of the Brutalizer. Cash Wheeler attacked PAC after the match, and was soon joined by Andrade El Idolo & Malakai Black. The Lucha Brothers & Cody Rhodes made the save to help PAC fend off the heels.
  • In the contract signing for the AEW World Championship Match at Full Gear, “Hangman” Adam Page said that Kenny Omega was never proud of him, and that he will beat him on Saturday. A disguised Don Callis hit Page with a TV camera, bloodying him. Omega taunted his opponent before signing the match contract in Page’s own blood.

Rampage Results for 11/12/21 (Episode 14)

  • Jungle Boy def. Bobby Fish via submission (10:14) by way of the Snare Trap. Post-mach, Adam Cole attacked Jungle Boy as Fish soon joined in. Christian Cage & Luchasaurus chased Cole off.
  • Backstage, “Hangman” Page confronted the Young Bucks, apologizing for costing them a shot at the AEW Tag Titles a year ago, while making it clear that if the Jacksons get involved at Full Gear, he’s going to ruin them.
  • Jade Cargill def. Santana Garrett via pinfall (2:00) for the relatively easy win. Red Velvet would fight Jade after the match, also throwing the cake meant to celebrate Jade’s one-year anniversary in AEW in manager “Smart” Mark Sterling’s face.
  • Dante Martin def. Ariya Daivari via pinfall (5:33). Dante’s manager/tag partner Lio Rush was not present due to mourning the passing of his grandmother. After the match, Team Taz made an offer for Dante to join them.
  • “Big Money” Matt Hardy def. Orange Cassidy via pinfall (10:25) in a Lumberjack Match after some cheap help from The Blade and his brass knucks.

Full Gear 2021 Results (11/13/21)

  • The Buy-In: Thunder Rosa & Hikaru Shida def. Nyla Rose & Jamie Hayter via pinfall (12:05)
  • MJF def. Darby Allin via pinfall (21:56) after a cheapshot with the Dynamite Diamond Ring, followed by a side headlock takedown pin.
  • The Lucha Bros. def. FTR via pinfall (18:37) after pinning a masked Cash Wheeler, who was not the legal man of the match.
  • World Title Eliminator Finals: Bryan Danielson def. Miro via referee stoppage (19:59) with a dragon sleeper that followed a tornado DDT. Danielson now is the No. 1 Contender for the AEW World Championship.
  • Christian Cage & Jurassic Express def. The SuperKliq via pinfall (22:20) in a wild Falls Count Anywhere match that saw crowd dives, thumbtack kneepads, and table spots a-plenty. The finish came when Jungle Boy put Matt Jackson out of commission with a con-chair-to for the pin and win.
  • Cody Rhodes & PAC def. Andrade El Idolo & Malakai Black (16:52) after PAC pinned Andrade. After the match, Cash Wheeler attacked Cody and PAC.
  • Dr. Britt Baker DMD def. Tay Conti via pinfall (15:16) to retain the AEW Women’s World Championship.
  • CM Punk def. Eddie Kingston via pinfall (11:07) following 2 GTSes in a very brutal match where Punk and Kingston battered the hell out of one another. Post-match, Punk extended a handshake, but Kingston just walked off.
  • The Inner Circle def. Men of the Year & American Top Team via pinfall (19:37) in the Minneapolis Street Fight when Chris Jericho paid tribute to Eddie Guerrero with a frog splash on Dan Lambert to get the pin.
  • “Hangman” Adam Page def. Kenny Omega via pinfall (25:11) to become the new AEW World Champion, capping off Full Gear in dramatic fashion. Page prevailed after hitting Kenny with two Buckshot Lariats, while the Young Bucks did nothing to stop him.

It’s Wednesday Night. You Know What That Means

After another updated version of the Dynamite intro (including shots of our new AEW World Champion) and a recap of a monumental Full Gear event, our three esteemed commentators (Jim Ross, Excalibur, Tony Schiavone) tee up tonight’s show from the Chartway Arena in Norfolk, Virginia. Opening up the show, as JR puts it, is “Cowboy Shiznit Day”.

“Cleaner, I Got This”

https://mobile.twitter.com/AEW/status/1461138512686858249

Backstage, we get remarks from Kenny Omega and The Elite. Kenny says that he hasn’t watched his AEW World Title loss at Full Gear last week (which means he certainly didn’t see the Young Bucks not helping him win) and people have wondered when he’s going to get his rematch. He admits that Hangman Page was the better man and that there’s some things he needs to fix elsewhere. Kenny asks the Young Bucks to “hold the fort” while he’s away, as Adam Cole enthusiastically says “Cleaner, I got this”, attempting to take charge. Kenny says that he wasn’t referring to Cole, bringing the segment to an awkward end.

National Cowboy Shit Day

The New AEW World Champion, face to face with his next opponent (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

In the ring, John Silver and the Dark Order are in the ring, which has been decorated in various cowboy-themed regalia. Silver introduces our new AEW World Champion, “Hangman” Adam Page.

Hangman makes his entrance to loud cheers from his hometown fans (with the ever-self-deprecating lower-third chyron declaring that this is an “Unnecessary Cheap Pop”). He reveals the AEW World Title underneath his jacket to a roar of cheers and, of course, “Cowboy Shit” chants.

Taking the mic, Page says that he doesn’t deserve the cheers because he effin’ earned them on Saturday. Crowd: “You earned it! You earned it!”. He says that he’s not usually one to flap his gums, but he’s the AEW World Champion and he’ll do whatever the hell he wants. Page tells the fans that he’s just a man who has to work for a boss, and that said boss is us, the fans. He says that if he’s allowed to, that he’d like to celebrate National Cowboy Shit Day with us.

Page knows that being AEW World Champ carries with it a lot of responsibility, and that said responsibilty includes facing “The American Dragon” Bryan Danielson next. Cue the entrance of the aforementioned American Dragon.

Danielson offers his congratulations to Hangman, and with it, a handshake that’s returned in kind. He says that while he’s excited for the AEW Title Match upcoming, he’s a bit disappointed that it isn’t Kenny Omega standing across the ring from him. 

Page replies that it’s because he kicked Omega’s ass for the World Title, and that he did it in less than thirty minutes. Danielson says that he’s not here to start any beef, but Page is not going to be facing a guy dressing up like a Ghostbuster, he’s going to be wrestling a guy who’s here to kick ass.

Danielson notes that Cowboy Shit apparently doesn’t mean wrestling because Page is out here celebrating, while he’s out here wrestling every week. He mentions that when he won the World Championship at WrestleMania, he wrestled the very next day. Danielson: “Of course Virginia boos hard work!”

Page says that if Danielson wants to wrestle tonight, they can do it right now. Danielson responds by saying that he’d be up for it, but while he’s in full gear (heh), Page is wearing cowboy boots, jeans, and a “horrible” leather jacket. He notes that everyone told him that “Hangman” Adam Page had a long list of excuses for why he’s failed for his entire caeer. He says that he doesn’t want to beat Page with the excuse that he wasn’t ready for it.

Page replies that we can have it Bryan’s way, we won’t have a match tonight. However, he’s still in a fighting mood. The AEW World Champion gets in Danielson’s face and looks like he wants to kick his ass. The entire Dark Order attempts to restore some semblance of peace before things can escalate.

“Have all your little friends stop us, you don’t really want to fight right now!” says Danielson. “They know I’d kick his ass, there’s no way they’d let him go…” That’s enough to cause Hangman to charge at Danielson as the American Dragon backs away from the ring. He’ll be facing Evil Uno coming up next.

Match 1: Bryan Danielson vs. Evil Uno

The American Dragon tapped into a more vicious side against Evil Uno (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

The Story So Far

As you just saw, new number one contender Bryan Danielson is geting real antagonistic towards the new AEW Champion.

The Match

We start right away with Danielson taking down Uno and applying a single-leg crab. Uno reaches the ropes, but Danielson refuses to let go. Once he does, he informs referee Aubrey Edwards that “he has ‘til five”. Back and forth moments early on with Danielson and Uno exchanging holds and moves.

Early pinfall attempt by Uno gets a two. The masked Evil Uno slaps Danielson in the face, only to be met with a harder slap by Dragon. It’s Danielson on the offensive now, ending with a front chancery suplex. He takes in the boos from the Norfolk fans. Uno steps up to Danielson briefly, but he’s quickly beaten to the corner with repeated kicks. Aubrey gets Danielson away from Uno, again being reminded by the American Dragon that he’s got ‘til five.

Uno puts his hand behind his back and wants Danielson to give him his best shot. Danielson instead opts to give him some facewashes. On the third facewash, Uno unloads away with a Violence Party barrage on Danielson in the corner. Evil Uno’s on the attack now, hurricanrana, followed by a swinging neck breaker. 1… 2.. NO! Boots to the headd by Uno, but Danielson responds with a spinning elbow strike that sends Uno to the corner. Danielson gets in Uno’s face, before going for the repeated running dropkicks. Uno stops the third one with a running strike. Blocked senton from the top allows Danielson to respond with the running knee strike! 1… 2… NO! Grabbing Uno’s arms, he proceeds to stomp away on his head. Triangle Choke by the American Dragon puts an end to this match.

Bryan Danielson def. Evil Uno via submission (6:22)

Post-Match

In the ring, Tony Schiavone interviews the winner of the previous match. Danielson says that until he fights Hangman Page for the AEW World Title, he’s going to kick every single member of the Dark Order’s heads in. Danielson challenges Colt Cabana next week, again showcasing his weird fascination with nuts.

MJF Brags About Victory At Full Gear

https://mobile.twitter.com/AEW/status/1461145119374065673

In remarks from after Full Gear, Maxwell Jacob Friedman talks about his “hard-earned” win over Darby Allin, stating that it’s proof that he’s the better wrestler than everyone else. He says that he’s excited to go to Norfolk, VA as he does the “I want the belt” gesture. Now that he’s beaten Darby with a headlock takeover, we have no choice but to acknowledge that he’s better than us, as Max claims.

Empire State of Mind

https://mobile.twitter.com/AEW/status/1461145696812388358

Eddie Kingston’s interview is interrupted by 2point0 and Daniel Garcia. They harangue Kingston for losing to CM Punk. Kingston gets in Garcia’s face, saying that he doesn’t respect him because he lets 2point0 call him “their son”, meaning that he can’t stand on his own. Kingston says that he knows that Garcia is a Buffalo native and that there’s only one way they can do this. Eddie gets into Garcia’s face before 2point0 leaves the scene. As Kingston leaves, he yells about having one promo where he’s not interrupted before stating that he’s going to catering.

Match 2: Orange Cassidy & Tomohiro Ishii vs. The Butcher and the Blade

The Stone Pitbull, Tomohiro Ishii, made his presence felt on Dynamite on behalf of CHAOS (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

The Story So Far

The HFO’s feud with Orange Cassidy and the Best Friends has gone on forever, it seems, but the latest chapter unfolded on Rampage last Friday, when Matt Hardy beat Orange in a Lumberjack match, with thanks to some brass knucks chicanery from The Blade. This would lead to the Best Friends calling in some back up from New Japan Pro-Wrestling’s CHAOS stable in the form of the Stone Pitbull himself, Tomohiro Ishii.

The Match

Ishii and The Butcher start off this tag match. Butcher backs off and tags in Blade. Butcher punches Ishii repeatedly, but the Stone Pitball just tanks the hits before flattening Blade with a single punch. Tag to Orange Cassidy who continues the offense on the Blade. As the Blade decides to jawjack with Ishii, Orange puts his hands in his pocket and does his kicks to the Blade, which leads to a flip over his opponent and a dropkick. Blind tag by Blade allows Butcher to hit Orange from behind. The heels take advantage with Orange being tossed to the outside, which allows The Bunny and Matt Hardy to get in some cheapshots before we go to picture-in-picture.

Returning from break, Butcher and the Blade still have the advantage over Cassidy. However, Orange uses his fast and furious speed to eventually avoid the HFO hitmen. That allows him to just casually saunter to tag in Tomohiro Ishii. Now it’s Ishii with chops and a suplex on the Blade for a near-fall. The Butcher tags in and we get a showdown of these two juggernauts. Butcher hits a clothesline in the corner on Ishii as he starts chopping away. The Stone Pitbull is unmoved as he again tanks the Butcher’s offense, managing to force Butcher into the other corner. One strike from Ishii stuns the Butcher and that leads to a massive superplex! 1… 2… the Blade intervenes to stop the count! Ishii tags in Orange Cassidy. 

Orange’s attempted crossbody is intercepted by the Butcher and the Blade, who uses him as a battering ram to take Ishii down. Orange responds with the Stundog Millionaire on the Butcher. He hits an impressive spinning DDT on the Blade that gets a two-count. Orange removes the elbow up and he’s got the Blade in his sights. The Orange Punch is intercepted as Butcher slams Cassidy down. The Butcher and the Blade hoist up their foe and hit a powerbomb/neckbreaker move on him! 1… 2… Tomohiro Ishii dives in at the last second! Ishii drags Orange’s body to the corner and tags in. 

The Stone Pitbull goes on a rampage on both Butcher and Blade before Matt Hardy & The Bunny get involved. German suplex on the Butcher by Ishii. The Blade has the brass knucks, but Rocky Romero pulls him out before he can hit Ishii. Matt Hardy rams Romero into the barricade, but Orange Cassidy soars and takes down Hardy and the Blade. The Blade is tossed in and is immediately crushed by an Ishii lariat. Vertical drop brainbuster by Ishii is enough to end this in a win for CHAOS.

Tomohiro Ishii & Orange Cassidy def. The Butcher & The Blade via pinfall (11:19)

“One More Fight Left in Me”

https://mobile.twitter.com/AEW/status/1461150132989313026

Backstage with Andrade El Idolo & FTR, Tony Schiavone interviews them. Andrade brags that he’s a better wrestler than Cody Rhodes & PAC, and that now, he’s going to show them his “bad side”. Cash Wheelr suggests that they get Malakai Black and make it an eight-man tag match against Cody, PAC, and the Lucha Brothers. Tully Blanchard has a challenge for Arn Anderson, saying that he’s not Jose and that he’s got one more fight left in him if Arn wants a piece of him.

Lessons Learned

https://mobile.twitter.com/AEW/status/1461150625295749126

Tay Conti goes over her close loss to Dr. Britt Baker at Full Gear, saying that she didn’t fail on Saturday and that she’s learned some lessons from her loss. Conti vows that next time she gets a shot at the AEW Women’s World Title, she’s going to win it.

What’s Next for Team DMD?

https://mobile.twitter.com/AEW/status/1461151127760785421

Schiavone is backstage with Dr. Britt Baker DMD, Rebel (not Reba), and Jamie Hayter. Dr. Britt says that she’s getting a little exhausted from carrying AEW’s women’s division, saying that she’s passing over the spotlight to Jamie Hayter, the future TBS Champion. Britt says that once Hayter defeats Thunder Rosa next week, she’ll become irrelevant.

Match 3: Nyla Rose vs. Hikaru Shida (TBS Championship Tournament)

Hikaru Shida had her work cut out against the Native Beast, Nyla Rose (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

The Story So Far

Both Nyla and Shida are the all-time wins leaders in AEW’s Women’s Division and have faced off against each other several times, including at last year’s Full Gear, where Shida defeated Nyla to become the AEW Women’s World Champion. Now, these two will face off again with a chance to advance in the TBS Championship Tournament at stake.

The Match

Brawling to start off the match as Nyla and Shida exchange offense against each other. Shida on the top rope as she hits a missle dropkick on Nyla’s knee. That gets only two. Shida maintains the advantage as Nyla rolls out and regroups with manager Vickie  Guerrero. Shida basks in the cheers and chases Nyla back into the ring. Shida runs in and gets floored by Nyla, who begins to work over her opponent. Nyla starts to target the taped up knee of Hikaru Shida with various holds. Vickie gets in a cheap kendo stick choke on Shida while Nyla has the referee distracted. 

Now with Shida on the outside, Nyla tries to toss her into the barricade, but that’s reversed. Shida pulls out a chair and puts it in position. Nyla takes her down and plants Shida on the chair. She gets on the apron and looks to hit the senton on a prone Shida, but ends up hitting nothing but the chair instead! With Nyla down, Vicike attempts to hit Shida with the kendo stick, but it’s grabbed away from her. Shida strikes down Vickie with the kendo stick. Inside the ring, Nyla throws Shida from the top rope into the ring as we go to commercial.

Just as the action resumes, we see Serena Deeb attacking Shida’s knee on the outside while the referee is tending to Nyla Rose. Back in the ring, Nyla props up Shida across the top rope and goes to the top. Guillotine leg drop gets an incredibly close two-count. Nyla hoists Shida up for the Beast Bomb, but that’s reversed into a triangle choke! Nyla lifts up Shida and powerbombs her to escape the submission. Missed sentons by Nyla allows Shida to get a jackknife pin for a two count. With Nyla in position, Shida goes for the Katana kick, but her leg is grabbed into a stretch muffler on the bad leg! Shida has no choice but to tap out.

Nyla Rose def. Hikaru Shida via submission (11:06)

(Rose advances to the TBS Championship Tournament Semifinals)

The Toxic Air You Breathe

https://mobile.twitter.com/AEW/status/1461157288920690694

Malakai Black says that in Chicago next week, he and his team will leave Cody Rhodes, PAC, and the Lucha Brothers gasping for air. He says that he will turn the very air that Cody breathes into toxic air.

MJF Has A Lot To Say

MJF attempts to introduce himself to CM Punk the right way (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

Maxwell Jacob Friedman, flanked by Shawn Spears & Wardlow make their way to the ring with the usual chorus of boos.

Spears attempts to get the Norfolk fans to be silent before MJF speaks. That, of course, fails.

Max takes the mic and proceeds to brag about how he’s the man that’s going to start a bidding war in 2024, and how he’s the past, present, and future of pro wrestling. He says that he could take the “hometown horse” and send him to the glue factory as he takes a huge “cowboy shit” all over his title reigh. 

He says that we all know that he deserves to be the AEW World Champion. Excalibur: “Says the guy who wrestles three times a year…” And that’s because nobody in the AEW locker room is on his level. Cue the static and cue Living Color. That brings the arrival of one CM Punk to the ring.

As Punk enters the ring and stares down MJF, the fans realize what’s about to go down and chant “holy shit!” Max tries to say something, but he’s met by “shut the fuck up!” chants from these fans. MJF introduces himself to CM Punk as “Maxwell” before offering a handshake. Punk can only laugh in MJF’s face before walking off without saying a word to him. That’s enough to leave MJF very flabbergasted. 

Who Likes Turtles?

https://mobile.twitter.com/AEW/status/1461156823931793410

Backstage, Darby Allin notes how MJF didn’t break him mentally, and that there will be a rematch somedays. He says that he’s ready to take on the biggest and the baddest that AEW has to offer. The Gunn Club interrupts with Billy Gunn saying that he accepts Darby’s challenge. Colten tells Darby to not forget his skateboard, while Austin mockingly says “I love turtles” to him. “Screw it, let’s do this” is Darby’s response to the Gunn Club.

“You Can’t Say That!”

https://mobile.twitter.com/AEW/status/1461157831948832769

The SuperKliq are backstage, saying that they’re sick and tired of Christian Cage and Jurassic Express. Adam Cole says that while the Young Bucks aren’t cleared to compete because of what happened to them at Full Gear, he’s got his best friend ready to join him as they take on Jungle Boy & Luchasaurus on Rampage: Bobby Fish. The ever-cocky Fish has some words for Jurassic Express, mocking them and saying that he’s going to put an end to this “Jurassic” joke, because that is Undisput…. Matt Jackson stops Fish short of finishing that statement, claiming that he can’t say that next word.

Match 4: Lio Rush & Dante Martin vs. The Acclaimed

Dante Martin was in top flight form once again on AEW Dynamite (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

The Story So Far

Fresh off a succcessful tag team debut last week on Dynamite, the team of Lio Rush & Dante Martin have been turning heads. That’s led to Team Taz attempting to get Dante to join them. Meanwhile, the Acclaimed tried to court Dante to join them during The Buy-In prior to Full Gear on Saturday, and were met with an emphatic “no” from him.

The Match

Right as The Acclaimed finish their rap, Lio and Dante immediately dive onto them and toss the two in the ring to start this match. Anthony Bowens & Dante Martin start us off in this tag match. It’s Lio & Dante utilizing their tag team acumen to get the early advantage until Max Caster trips up Dante. He tosses Dante into the barricade before a double suplex with Bowens outside the ring. It’s all Acclaimed at this point as we go picture-in-picture.

Back to live action as Dante escapes a double team predicament and proceeds to use Bowens and Caster as leap pads to get the hot tag on Lio Rush. The Man of the Hour dazzles with his rapid fire offense. He gets the Frankensteiner on Caster, followed by avoiding Bowens with a nice dodge and a spinning enzuiguiri on him. Palm strikes and an axe kick from Rush has Bowens reeling. 1… 2… NO! 

Lio goes to the top and is thinking of the Frog Splash, but nobody’s home! Caster hits a chop across Lio’s chest, but Dante Maritn interjects before the Acclaimed can take advantage. Double moonsault is avoided by Caster, but he can’t avoid a spinning kick by Lio Rush. Bowens takes down Lio, and is subsequently floored by a diving dropkick by Dante Martin. 

Max Caster tags in to the match. Step-up backflip by Lio amounts to nothing as Caster takes him down with a lethal lariat. Anthony Bowens tags in and takes down Lio with a slam, as Caster hits the Mic Drop off the top rope! 1… 2… Dante Martin breaks it up at 2.99999!!!!! 

Caster and Dante briefly fight before Dante sends him packing iwth a dropkick. Bowens steps in and gets dropped by Dante’s springboard double moonsault, the Nosedive. Dante directs traffic as Lio takes to the skies with the Frog Splash to get the victory.

Lio Rush & Dante Martin def. The Acclaimed via pinfall (9:30)

Post-Match

Lio & Dante’s victory celebration is cut short by the arrival of Team Taz. The namesake of the team, Taz, congratulates the two on their win. He says that the offer to Dante Martin was nothing personal and was just business. They say that they’ll be patient with Dante like they were with “Powerhouse” Will Hobbs (who’s celebrating one year with Team Taz). Ricky Starks says that choosing Team Taz will be the start of a hall of fame career and that sticking with Lio Rush will be the start of a “mediocre” one. 

“Never Bring a Fish to a Fist Fight”

https://mobile.twitter.com/AEW/status/1461162244901949448

Christian and Jurassic Express talk about their victory at Full Gear, stating that they are better now than they’ve ever been. They accept the challenge of Bobby Fish and Adam Cole for Friday’s Rampage, as Christian says to “never bring a Fish to a fist fight”.

The Lucha Brothers Respond

Penta El Zero M & Rey Fenix say that FTR should stop their crying over being cheated, and that they suck so bad that they couldn’t get the job done even with their cheating antics. They pivot to next week’s big tag match, saying that they’ve got something special because their team of themselves, PAC, and Cody Rhodes are the best four-man team around.

Match 5: Sammy Guevara vs. Jay Lethal (TNT Championship)

The TNT Champion staring down his latest challenger, Jay Lethal (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

The Story So Far

Jay Lethal announced he was All Elite at Full Gear and challenged Sammy Guevara for the TNT Championship. That’s all there is to it.

The Match

Lethal and Guevara are at a deadlock to start this match. Attempted GTH by Guevara is turned into a figure four by Lethal that’s reversed. Lethal with a dropkick that gets a two count. More back and forth from the two, but Lethal begins to target Guevara’s ribs with a knee to the back. Guevara scurries to the outside, then intercepting Lethal with a knee to the face. Tope suicida by Guevara on the outside. Sammy brings Lethal back to the inside and goes to the top. He attempts a shooting star press, but Lethal gets his knees up at the last second, causing more pain to Guevara’s injured ribs. We go to the last commercial break in the evening here.

We return to our main event with the ringside doctor checking up on Sammy and referee Paul Turner asking the TNT Champion if he’s still able to go, despite the injured ribs. Sammy says he’s good to go. Guevara and Lethal begin to exchange strikes, but it’s the challenger who continues to take advantage of Guevara’s injured ribs. Pop-up flapjack by Lethal connects. 

Jay Lethal signals that it’s time for the Lethal Injection, but Guevara counters that into a Spanish Fly. Lethal is able to roll outside, as it seems that Guevara has taken the worst of that last move. Jay tosses Guevara to the outside and looks like he’s going to hit a suicide dive on the TNT Champion. Guevara catches Lethal and turns that into a brainbuster. The fight makes its way to the timekeeper area as Guevara hits Lethal with the knee to leave his opponent sprawled across the timekeeper table. Guevara ascends to the top and attempts a senton, but Lethal moves out of the way. Sammy ends up crashing himself through the table instead.

The action spills back into the ring. Lethal goes for a Macho Man elbow, but Sammy counters into a pinfall for the close two. Inverted facebuster by Lethal gets a near-fall. Figure-Four Leglock by Lethal has Guevara struggling in pain. The TNT Champ is able to get to the ropes to break the hold.

The finish comes as Guevara is able to hit the GTH after two failed attempts due to the injured ribs. That’s enough to win the match.

Sammy Guevara def. Jay Lethal via pinfall (12:52)

(Guevara retains the TNT Championship)

Post-Match

The Inner Circle show up to congratulate their fellow stablemate in a successful TNT Title defense to close out Dynamite

This Friday on Rampage (11/19/21)

  • Darby Allin vs. Billy Gunn
  • TBS Championship Tournament: Red Velvet vs. Jade Cargill
  • Jurassic Express vs. Adam Cole & Bobby Fish

Next Wednesday on Dynamite (11/24/21)

  • Colt Cabana vs. Bryan Danielson
  • TBS Championship Tournament: Thunder Rosa vs. Jamie Hayter
  • PAC, Cody Rhodes & The Lucha Brothers vs. Malakai Black, Andrade El Idolo & FTR

The Last Word

If Full Gear represented the end of “Phase One” of the story of AEW, then Wednesday’s Dynamite made for a promising start to “Phase Two” of the future of the company.

Given the reports of Kenny Omega working through several injuries and bouts of vertigo through his World Title run, it’s unsurprising that he’ll be taking some time off so that he can recover after a nearly year-long run at the top. Using this segment to write off Omega from TV and build the eventual rift with Adam Cole was a smart move.

Equally smart was pivoting Bryan Danielson into a heel role as Hangman Page’s first World Title challenger. With nothing more than having Danielson rip into Page for daring to celebrate his big title win, AEW has created a perfect foil for Page to help establish him as an even more of a big deal. And it’ll be a fitting passing of the torch of sorts by having the new “champion of the people” in the Hangman besting the man who was at a time one of the most popular babyfaces in pro wrestling.

Ever since CM Punk arrived in AEW on that fateful August evening in Chicago, fans have been fantasy booking an inevitable feud with MJF, and now, that moment has seemingly arrived. While the mic battles between the two are sure to be memorable, this feud arguably started off strong with Punk getting the first salvo in without saying anything at all. By having Punk simply laugh in MJF’s face before walking off, it’s already left fans wanting more, especially when it comes time for Punk & MJF to duel on the mic.

Two matches into his AEW tenure (not counting the Casino Battle Royal) and Lio Rush has proven himself to be quite impressive. His tag team with Dante Martin has not only helped bring a shine to Dante, but also to Lio himself, being able to show off the kind of offensive display that makes him someone easy to root for. The initial idea of this pairing appeared to be Lio being a “negative” influence on Dante, but it’d be smart to pivot them into a high-flying babyface tag team able to get a great reaction from the fans.

Marc Quill is the editor of RingCrashers, GateCrashers’ home for all your All Elite Wrestling and indie wrestling needs. He’s also the web novelist behind Skye Emery: Bluebird, which you can read here. You can chat with him about wrestling, comics, and stuff in general on @MarcQuill on Twitter.

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TBS Championship Tournament Recap #2

Welcome back to MK’s women’s wrestling corner! This week I cover the last two matches of the first round of the TBS tournament and the women’s matches during Full Gear week, but not the Women’s Championship match at Full Gear since obviously that’s a completely different storyline.

Intro — November 3rd Dynamite Promos

I want to talk about the Ruby/Kris promo from November 3rd before we get into matches, because while wrestling is, of course, at the core of a storyline, the promo is equally as important. And I love a promo where the two wrestlers involved respect the hell out of each other like this. Ruby admits that her coming match with Kris will be her hardest to date; Kris, meanwhile, confidently says she knows more about Ruby than Ruby knows about her. It’s a great promo for both of them, on a night of some already great promos.

Meanwhile, Tony presents Shida with her (newly repaired) trophy commemorating her fiftieth win, but before she can say anything Nyla and Vickie come out. Shida takes a step back with a noticeable limp— Serena, of course, attacked that knee in their match and after her loss— as Nyla and Vickie slow clap. “How long did it take you to get that? Don’t answer that,” Nyla says, regarding the fifty win trophy. We love some snarky heels— a nice little contrast to the previous promo.

Match #3 — Anna Jay vs Jamie Hayter, November 3rd Dynamite

Okay, I don’t know what Jamie’s hair was doing the last couple of weeks, but her look today is absolutely incredible. The double blonde streaks framing her face on the Farrah Fawcett blowout? The long black duster? Goddamn, remind me more that I love women.

Anna Jay also looks absolutely incredible tonight, in the pink gear that matches Tay Conti and the gorgeous eye makeup— even if the Dark Order aren’t accompanying her to the ring.

During picture-in-picture, Britt takes advantage of Aubrey being distracted by talking Jamie down to bite Anna’s face. Or like, I think she’s biting. It’s hard to tell, because the picture is so small.

Anna tries to go for the Queenslayer, but instead Rebel distracts Aubrey so Britt can tug at Anna’s ankles just long enough for Jamie to get away and take out Anna for the win. But that’s not enough for AEW’s resident mean girls, who surround Anna to beat her down. Tay runs out to defend her, getting a couple good hits in on Britt ahead of their match at Full Gear.

Match #4 — The Bunny vs Red Velvet, November 5th Rampage

The Bunny skips out alone just before the commercial break, leading me to believe she just spent the commercials skipping in circles. Red Velvet, meanwhile, doesn’t even spend a moment to let her music hit before she’s dashing down the ramp and yeeting herself directly at The Bunny to start the match.

These second two matches for the first round of the TBS Tournament are notably very, very short. All the ladies this week get a couple of really nice spots, including a brutal stairs spot dealt to Red Velvet by The Bunny, but neither match lasts longer than five minutes or so; and much of the focus of this particular match turns to Jade Cargill and “Smart” Mark Sterling, doing research on their future opponent by watching this match. (“Who writes on a pad?” asks Taz, on commentary.)

In any case, Red Velvet lands The Final Slice on The Bunny and pins her clean in the middle of the ring. The close of this match is a tense stand-off between Red Velvet and Jade Cargill ahead of their next match.

Interlude — Dr. Britt Baker, Rebel (not Reba), and Jamie Hayter vs Tay Conti, Anna Jay, and Thunder Rosa, November 10th Dynamite

Can I cover the Trios Match happening on the go-home show for Full Gear? It’s tied into this Tournament storyline, kind of, given that it was born from Anna vs Jamie as well as being tied into Tay vs Britt.

Okay, okay, you don’t have to convince me, I’ll do it.

Britt, Rebel, and Jamie Hayter all come out together, and can I just say? Rebel, I love you to bits, please protect your poor knees. The number of injuries she’s had, including that last one in the match against Nyla and Vickie that put her back on crutches… you look stellar, Rebel, now accent that fabulous gear with some bedazzled kneebraces.

Tay and Anna come out in their matching bright pink gear; every time I see it I’m even more in love with it. Thunder Rosa follows after them and she’s ALSO matching them in bright pink. It makes me so happy to see. All three of them look amazing in bright pink!

After all six women just start beating on each other— and that’s always so nice to see— the first matchup in the ring is Britt and Rosa… and boy, do you feel the history hang in the moment before they charge for each other. Please, please, PLEASE, AEW, give me their explosive bloody feud again. 

Match goes to picture in picture… again. I’ve gotta start thinking of things to say when the match goes to picture in picture. Let’s talk about Tay for a minute, I guess, since I won’t get another opportunity to talk about her during the rest of the tournament. I love when Tay Conti gets mad and her shoot-fighting background comes out. She genuinely is one of the most powerful looking women’s wrestlers in the AEW division. I’m glad Tony Khan recognized the talent in her and hired her when he had the chance, and I really hope she gets a good push soon.

Anyway, Tay gets the pin on Rebel and immediately goes for Britt, who’s already halfway up the ramp clutching the belt to her chest like Tay’s gonna steal it out of her hands. Don’t worry, Dr. Baker, that won’t be til Saturday! (I harbor no illusions that Tay will win, but one day.) 

Interlude #2 — Full Gear Buy-In Match, November 13th

Makes sense they’re going to shelve the the tournament on pay-per-view weekend. No one can stop me from talking about the buy-in, then, which was Nyla Rose and Jamie Hayter vs Thunder Rosa and Hikaru Shida.

Nyla comes out first, followed by Jamie with an incredibly powerful look. Then Shida, and then Thunder Rosa with a deafening pop. All four ladies are still in the tournament, and Excalibur notes that Rosa is the clear favorite for the belt. 

Match starts with Nyla and Rosa facing off in the center of the ring. Nyla has the clear size advantage between both of her opponents, but Riho and Rosa are both proof that size isn’t everything when it comes to wrestlers. (By the way, the shrieking you hear throughout this match is Vickie Guerrero; the mic for this match was red-hot.) 

Nyla gets the advantage over her opponents by suplexing both of them… at once. This gives Jamie the chance to beat down a little on Rosa ahead of their quarter-final match, but Rosa gets a tag out to Shida to a nice little pop for Shida. Taz points out Serena Deeb is watching at ringside— to see the results of her attack on Shida following their match, perhaps? 

Let’s talk about the last few minutes of this match. Shida comes face to face with Deeb at ringside, which gives Vickie a chance to get a cheap shot at Shida’s injured knee with her own kendo stick. This gives Nyla a chance to get Shida back into the ring and give Jamie the tag. Jamie superplexes Shida off the middle rope, giving Nyla the opening to go for a Frog Splash and the attempted pin— but in comes Rosa to break it up. She throws Jamie out of the ring, so they can’t interfere when Shida thwarts Nyla’s Beast Bomb finisher and jackknifes her into the pin. 

Shida immediately flees up the ramp to join Rosa, away from Nyla, Jamie, and Vickie— probably leery of getting caught for a beatdown on an already injured knee. It’s a smart move, putting space between them as they all start shouting at each other from a distance. We get a final shot of Serena Deeb— who looks incredible tonight, by the way— and Excalibur wonders if the feud between her and Shida may not be over. I hope not, because it absolutely rocks. 

Closing Thoughts

  • All in all, I went 3 for 4 on my first round picks, which isn’t bad, even if I’m still confused as to what Hayter’s doing in this tournament.
  • AEW announced the first Dynamite to be filmed for TBS will be January 5th, 2022. I imagine the TBS champion will be crowned that night, if not the next week.
  • I’m glad to see Tony Khan acknowledge the importance of the TBS championship belt and the quality of the women’s division in the pre-Full Gear media call. I might talk shit about the size of the division, and I still think it’s important for AEW to sign more women if possible, but the talent we do have is some of the best in the world. Compare the quality of the women’s storylines on television now to that of the beginning of this year. There’s still a ways to go, for sure (the pre-Full Gear Rampage had yet another women’s match that was two minutes long, which is not doing Jade Cargill any favors) but the difference is notable.

Oh, wait, I get to do round 2 predictions now. Hell yeah. 

  • Ruby vs Stat is such a tough choice because they’re both so good and I want them both to move forward. Honestly, I wish this one were a semifinal match. Have to pick Statlander, though; I just love her too much. (That said, I will not be disappointed to be wrong.)
  • Nyla vs Shida has a LOT of history behind it from their Women’s Championship days; I honestly think it’s still one of the stronger feuds in the women’s division, besides Thunder Rosa and Britt Baker. I sort of don’t want to say it, but I can’t imagine Nyla doesn’t get the win, especially in the wake of Serena’s attack on Shida’s knee. I sort of hope I’m wrong though.
  • Hayter vs Rosa is an easy one for me— Thunder Rosa goes over; even though I still want her to get the world championship belt push she deserves, she’s just incredibly popular with the audience. Any other opponent, maybe she doesn’t? But having her lose this particular matchup is a little inconceivable to me.
  • FINALLY we get the Jade Cargill vs Red Velvet rematch. I’ve been waiting for this since their mixed tag match way back in March. Like, I think it’s going to be Jade no question, but Red Velvet’s gonna give her a run for her money and we’ll see the first strains of weakness in Jade. 

These predictions all assume that all four of the first round byes are the ones who progress to semi-finals. It’s a little unfortunate. Of the four making it from the first round prelims, I would say Ruby is the most likely to be the surprise swerve from my prediction. Shida’s next up, but I doubt they’ll put the TBS belt on the woman who was last women’s world champion. As for Red Velvet, though I desperately want her to beat Jade Cargill, I don’t think it’s now. 

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Uncategorized

AEW Dark Dork Review, Week of 11/8/21

Hey, everyone, happy Full Gear! It’s your AEW Dark Dork Review, recapping the Missouri shows of Elevation and Dark!

Starting off from the Independence show we have Elevation here, with Excalibur taking over Tony Schiavone!

Powerhouse Hobbs w/ Hook vs Danny Adams: I love Hobbs. He’s great, but listen: Danny Adams is not only a Tony Schiavone look alike, but he is better known on the Indie circuits as Dan the Dad. He’s wrestling with glasses, wearing short shorts, and wearing what look like white New Balance sneakers. Tony, sign him to perform on every Dark from now until the heat death of the universe. However, uh, he gets the Town Business from Hobbs, and then gets put into a Torture Rack carry for the win.

The Butcher and the Blade vs. Chuck Taylor and Wheeler Yuta: There’s no Matt Hardy here, at least? But we have a new permutation of Best Friends Members vs HFO Members tag action tonight. Excalibur and Paul Wight must on Chuck Taylor’s moniker of the Kentucky Gentleman, starting that he’s not very gentlemanly. We get a very fun tag match here, with the Butcher and the Blade getting some extracurricular violence outside the ring after distracting the ref. Our murderous mercenaries pick up the win over the Best Friends in the end.

Riho vs Tootie Lynn: Riho goes up against local St. Louis talent Tootie Lynn, who is able to take early control of the match with her impressive striking. The former women’s champ is able to rally and get the win with a diving double stomp off the top rope.

Matt Hardy vs Dean Alexander: Dean Alexander becomes a member of the Dark Jobber Five-Timers’ Club! As a reward, Matt Hardy takes a mic and asks him who he is. Alexander gleefully replies he’s Dean Alexander and he’s from Kansas City, to the delight of the crowd. Matt Hardy says that he’s going to make Alexander say his name with reverence, then goes to work. He smacks Alexander’s face into each of the turnbuckles in one of the corners, and while Alexander gets some offense in, Hardy really goes in on the brutality. Alexander is able to land a huge neckbreaker though, and the local crow is rallying, but as he ascends to the top rope, Hardy is able to get back up and he gets the superplex in which sets up the Leech for the win.

Emi Sakura and Nyla Rose w/ Vickie Guerrero, Lulu Pencil, and Mei Suruga vs Ryo Mizunami and Ruby Soho: Mei Suruga is back in AEW! The Killer Queens, Nyla Rose and Emi Sakura, have a real entourage now, and honestly? Good for them. The Mizunami-Soho tag team has, just as much as any other tag team Ryo has in the last month, amazing vibes. Our rocker gals get the win off a back kick from Ruby, but after the match, Nyla drags Ryo from the ring and Lulu and Mei confront Ruby to distract her so Nyla and Mei can beat her up after. However, coming to the rescue is Kris Statlander, Ruby’s next opponent in the TBS tournament!

Dark Order vs 2point0 and the Acclaimed: Hey, it’s all the boys! Our main Elevation event is an 8-man tag! The Acclaimed’s entrance rap this week dunks on the Chiefs’ terrible season and Kansas City barbecue, the latter of which might be the most violence-inducing thing Caster’s ever done. We get a classic chaotic big tag match, with a lot of fun spots here, but it’s John Silver who gets the Fatality, and Dark Order wins!

And we move onto Dark, coming to us from the St. Louis show. Taz promises a win for his team over Dark Over tonight, let’s see if they can deliver! We’ve got fifteen matches for Dark, so we’re going to see if we can blast through these

Dark Order vs Gunn Club: At this point, I’m sure Gunn Club is a torture experiment designed to see how much a gimmick with no real character can win and cause me annoyance when they beat people I love. I’m sure someone loves the Gunn Club. We get a delightful moment in this match, though, where we get a D-Generation X “suck it” from all three Dark Order members before tossing the Gunn Club into each other. However, the Gunn Club steals a victory with a rope-assisted pin. I hate it. Thanks.

Riho vs Heidi Howitzer: Heidi Howitzer has an absolutely great look here as a Mad Max-ish character. This one’s a quick win for Riho with the double-foot stomps.

Too Fast Too Fuego vs Nick Comoroto & Aaron Solo: THE BOYS RETURN. I’m not talking about the Factory here, though they’re fine. Fuego Two is back! Our tag team is now billed as being from “The Sun.” Just the Sun. We get more tattoo discussion, and Taz explains that AEW staff has laser tattoo removal from backstage. Taz has decided that he wants to figure out Fuego Two’s identity, and provides the evidence of his purple socks and mask that this is Pres10 Vance. Fuego Two’s Crossroads move does cause some confusion, but it’s the Tornado Confusion from Fuego One that gets the win.

Sammy Guevara & Jake Hager vs Koko Lane and Luke Langley: Ahead of the Minneapolis Streetfight for Full Gear, two of the Inner Circle go into tag action. The Inner Circle gets the win here off a huge senton atomico, but after the match, the Men of the Year jump the ring to get a little beat down on Hager and Guevara. Only Santana and Ortiz rushing the ring are able to

Best Friends vs Darian Benston, Davey Vega, and Camaro Jackson: The Best Friends go into action against an assortment of new talent, and they get the win here off of the Awful Waffle. After the pin, Davey Vega tries to attack Orange from behind and gets the Orange Punch for karmic retribution.

Dante Martin w/ Lio Rush vs Frankie Kazarian: The high-flying talent of Dante Martin goes against Frankie Kazarian, who seems to have dropped the Elite Hunter moniker. Frankie seems to have the upper hand for a good deal of this match, but Lio Rush interrupts a hold by grabbing Frankie’s boot. Dante’s able to escape then and get the double-jump moonsault for the pin, though Dante seems to be unaware of the assistance.

Thunder Rosa, Ryo Mizunami, and Kris Statlander vs Emi Sakura, Jamie Hayter, and Rebel w/ Lulu Pencil and Mei Suruga: Emi Sakura arrives to the ring with her Queen’s Court, and the Doctor’s assistants make a fun trio’s team of heels. Meanwhile, we’ve got Ryo Mizunami, Thunder Rosa, and our favorite alien in opposition, which is a great trio. We get the fun chaos of trios matches, with Lulu and Mei restraining Thunder Rosa ringside at one point, but she’s able to break free and pin Rebel after the Fire Thunder Driver. After the match, the team of Emi Sakura and Hayter start laying into the winners, but Ruby Soho comes to the rescue with a metal pipe and chases them off! She has a near miss with a swing and nearly hits Statlander, but she’s able to set it aside and backs off.

Matt Sydal & Lee Moriarty vs 2point0: Taz mentions on commentary that he’s beefing with 2point0 presently over bagels, which…tracks. I think 2point0 could feud with someone over what day of the week it was. Matt Sydal also gets a hometown hero’s welcome from the crowd here in St. Louis here. Sydal and Moriarty get the win here, and look good doing it. After the match, Lio Rush and Dante Martin come out, and the two teams have a nice staredown.

Nyla Rose vs Tootie Lynn: Traveling with AEW for the St. Louis show, Tootie Lynn is back! Tootie gets some good strikes in, but she’s no match for the power of Nyla. She has Lynn pinned, but lifts her so she can inflict some more pain with the Guillotine knee drop for the win.

Andrade El Idolo vs WARHORSE: WARHORSE is back! A former challenger for the TNT Championship, he’s here to face Andrade tonight. Andrade has Jose enter the ring initially to distract Warhorse and uses it to get a sneaky blow from behind. He’s able to get the quick win off the Hammerlock. Thanks for coming back, Warhorse.

Dark Order vs Team Taz: 10 and 5 are here to face off against Ricky Starks and Powerhouse Hobbs. On commentary, Taz compares Hobbs to a piece of Flora from Hobbs’ California, the Redwood, and you know? I love that. Mighty, massive, Californian. Team Taz get the win here in an enjoyable tag match.

Tay Conti w/ Anna Jay vs Miranda Gordy: Tay Conti goes against the daughter of the Fabulous Freebrids member Terry Gordy, and- oh, the match is over? Tay wins.

Wardlow w/ Shawn Spears vs Ryan Mantell: Shawn Spears watches from the sideline as his accountabilibuddy Wardlow turns Ryan Mantell into a Casualty of War.

Darby Allin vs QT Marshall: In prep for MJF, Darby’s going against QT Marshall, who comes in and cuts a promo on Sting, shaming him for kicking him on the nuts on Dynamite. He says that he expects MJF to get revenge for him on Darby, but he’s going to make it that MJF can’t even make it to Full Gear. QT here proves that he can always pull a fun match out here as the unofficial end boss of Dark, and we get a rare Dark Coffin Drop for the win!

Matt Hardy, Isiah Kassidy, and the Blade vs Jurassic Express and Christian Cage: We get a rather odd trio from the HFO as Jungle Boy and his two dads get a warm up for the Superkliq. This trios match ends with a fun little spot fest where everyone gets to hit their finishers and Jungle Boy gets the snare trap locked into the Blade.

That’s it from Missouri this week! Next week, we deal with the fallout from Full Gear!

Categories
Wrestling

AEW Full Gear 2021 Rundown

All Elite Wrestling capped off its 2021 stable of big pay-per-view events with an excellent Full Gear that saw the end of a two-year journey that began at AEW’s inception. We’re here to take a look at the big matches and moments that took place inside the Target Center in Minneapolis, MN in this special rundown of events.

Fight Forever

MJF def. Darby Allin (21:56)

MJF’s tombstone piledriver on the apron was just one of many brutal spots in this intense opener at Full Gear (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

Setting the tone of the evening with an excellent opener, two of AEW’s Four Pillars engaged in a match that could arguably be deemed as the Match of the Night. Heading into this bout, one of the main thrusts of the story between MJF & Darby was that Max believed that Darby was incapable of wrestling a straight technical contest.

Darby made his entrance with a pretaped video depicting him driving a car with a man wearing a MJF mask and crashing it before setting it on fire. It was said that this was meant to evoke the accident that killed Darby’s uncle (which MJF brought up to start this feud).

The match itself started off with both competitors showcasing their technical wrestling skills in an incredible chain wrestling sequence that ended in a stalemate. That was a sign that we were in for a wild ride coming up.

The scars of war were evident as Darby’s back and MJF’s knee were really hurting throughout the course of this match. A particularly dangerous spot where MJF planted Darby with a tombstone piledriver seemed to hurt the braggadocios grappler more than it did his opponent.

Max proving himself a man of his word (by way of a cheap shot with the Dynamite Diamond Ring) by actually scoring the victory with a side headlock takeover was a deviously heelish way to get the win, which now gives him victories over the other three Pillars of AEW. That, of course, will make for prime promo material in the coming weeks and months.

The American Dragon’s Wrath 

Bryan Danielson def. Miro (19:59) to win the World Title Eliminator Tournament

The American Dragon certainly did live up to his promise of kicking Miro’s freakin’ head in (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

This match saw Bryan attempting to match Miro’s raw power with his technical prowess, which made for a contrast of styles that worked so well to bolster this match. For every hold Danielson had, Miro would respond with crushing slams that targeted the American Dragon’s back.

The end came when Danielson seized upon Miro’s weakness for DDTs by landing a tornado DDT from the top rope, then immediately locking in a dragon sleeper to put the ex-Redeemer to sleep. This finish was tremendous in continuing to establish Danielson being able to win matches with a variety of moves, as he has done for nearly all his matches in AEW so far.

With Danielson’s win, he now moves on to face Hangman Page for the AEW Title at a yet-to-be-revealed date. It’s a safe bet that this match will headline a major TV card like the first Dynamite on TBS or the planned Battle of the Belts special taking place in 2022. Whenever it happens, you can be sure it’s going to be one hell of a match.

The Jungle Boy Becomes A Jungle Man

Jurassic Express & Christian Cage def. The SuperKliq (22:20)

Luchasaurus takes Adam Cole for a nasty ride off the stage (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

Serving as a capstone to an intense rivalry between the babyface trio of Jurassic Express (Jungle Boy & Luchasaurus) and Christian Cage against the heel Elite’s SuperKliq (Adam Cole & the Young Bucks), this match offered a satisfying conclusion to their feud by way of many, many wild spots between the two teams.

The spot of the match has to go to Luchasaurus doing a goddamned shooting star press off the stage onto a mass of humanity. A very close second goes to the SuperKliq equipping themselves with thumbtack kneepads to perform a brutal triple BTE Trigger.

The finish came when Jungle Boy finished off Matt Jackson with a Con-chair-to following Christian’s blessing, ending the match and giving one of AEW’s young pillars a bit of a needed edge to him. With the win for the babyface team, the Elite came up short in their bid to silence their enemies. Would that be a recurring theme for tonight?

A Goddamned War

CM Punk def. Eddie Kingston (11:07)

An ever-defiant Eddie Kingston only had one thing to say to CM Punk in their Full Gear match (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

The anticipated showdown fifteen years in the making between CM Punk and Eddie Kingston did not disappoint as it really did feel like clobberin’ time. Right away, things started off hot when Kingston flattened Punk with a spinning backfist before the bell even sounded. From there, the action turned into the wrestling equivalent of a back-alley brawl.

The crowd was electric for this encounter, with dueling chants for Punk and Kingston from the Minneapolis fans, to the point where Punk even got some very audible boos.

Punk had the crowd eating out of the palm of his hands when he invoked John Cena’s “Five Moves of Doom” in one sequence against Kingston, ending with a tease of doing the multiple-time world champion’s signature “You Can’t See Me” taunt.

Kingston entered this match with the expressed intention of hurting CM Punk as payback for passing him and never seeing anything in him fifteen years ago. He might’ve not picked up the victory for the record books, but he did manage to indeed hurt Punk by way of making him bleed after a ringpost shot.

In the end, though, it was Punk who ended up in the win column after two GTSes on Kingston, putting an end to this match after eleven minutes of pure brutality. Kingston’s refusal to shake Punk’s hand after the match indicates that we’re in for more of this feud down the line, and we can’t wait to see that happen.

Cowboy Shit

“Hangman” Adam Page def. Kenny Omega (25:11); Adam Page wins AEW World Championship

The new AEW World Champion “Hangman” Adam Page, celebrating with his Dark Order friends (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

Two years worth of long-term storytelling and fan investment finally paid off — fittingly enough, at a PPV event named after a Hangman skit from Being The Elite — as Hangman Page fulfilled the destiny he set out for himself at the dawn of AEW’s creation.

In a 25-minute bout that emphasized the intricate backstory between Page and Omega as much as it did the in-ring action. Prior to the match, the challenger entered to a video showing a horse-riding Hangman roaming the streets of downtown Minneapolis as clips of his past were shown. Once Page was on the stage, his lower-third graphic had the message of “‘We’re proud of you’ — Graphics Team”.

One of the recurring elements of Hangman’s character in AEW has been his lower-third graphics, which usually have a hilariously self-deprecating remark about him written on it, so that instead having a heartwarming message really helps make it a full-circle moment for Hangman.

Meanwhile, the AEW World Champion entered and was confronted with a fan sign stating “What would Kota think?”, referencing Omega’s longtime friend from New Japan Pro-Wrestling, Kota Ibushi. Once the introductions were out of the way, it was time for the bell to ring for this World Title bout.

The Adam Page that Kenny Omega faced at Full Gear was a more confident one than the Page he defeated in last year’s iteration to win the World Title Eliminator. For this chapter in the rivalry, Page was more than ready to meet Omega at every turn, with the goal of being a champion now closer than ever.

Tense moments were certainly not in short supply for this encounter as Omega and Page were, for lack of a better term, in full gear for this main event. Omega’s manager/confidante, Don Callis, got himself involved on more than one occasion, but eventually found comeuppance when Page decked the “carny piece of shit” when he tried to attack while the referee was down.

Speculation leading into this match was whether or not we’d see someone kicking out of the One-Winged Angel for a very close near fall. Turns out we did see it… just not the person we were expecting. Just as Omega had Page ready for his killshot maneuver, Hangman countered and hit him with the OWA himself. Omega would kick out of it at a very close 2.9999, as Excalibur put it. With the aforementioned Kota Ibushi being the only other person to kick out of the OWA, perhaps it’s only the Golden Lovers who are able to do so successfully?

The finish to this main event came when Page took down Omega with two Buckshot Lariats in the presence of the Young Bucks, who opted not to interfere on Omega’s behalf (perhaps heeding Page’s promise of ruining them if they got involved). The Bucks’ choice not to help Omega in the end will definitely figure into the eventual implosion of the Elite after so many months at the top.

All that being said, the emotional resonance of the journey of Hangman Page — through its peaks and valleys, its many highs and lows — finally reached its destination. After failing to become the first AEW World Champion, losing the trust of the friends he had in the Elite, and losing in big matches when it mattered, the Hangman dug deep and stayed true to himself as his former friends descended into darkness.

And for that moment of triumph, Page was joined by his new, true friends in the Dark Order, those lovable band of misfits who stuck by Hangman, even through the roughest of storms. Page choosing to refuse a beer handed to him and instead finding comfort in celebrating with his Dark Order friends made for a wonderfully high note to close out Full Gear on.

The story of Adam Page as the “anxious millennial cowboy” is one unlike any other main event wrestling babyface has had before, and yet, it’s a perfect one for these perilous times we live in today. Just as the 80s had larger-than-life superheroes as the top stars and the 90s had defiant no-nonsense badasses as its heroes, Page as someone who’s own worst enemy is self-confidence issues is emblematic of this decade. It’s made him easily relatable with the AEW demographic and allowed him to connect with fans in a way that no other top good guy in wrestling has ever been able to before.

If there’s one thing that All Elite Wrestling excels in it’s in their ability to just give fans satisfying payoffs to their storylines and letting their heroes win without issue when it comes time for it. That was on full display here with Page’s big triumphant World Title victory.

All The Rest

  • The Minneapolis Street Fight went as expected, with the Inner Circle defeating Men of the Year & American Top Team. The match itself was standard street fight fare, with a Minnesota flavor to it. Andrei Arlovski & Junior Dos Santos didn’t look out of place with the ring veterans of the match. While Chris Jericho hasn’t exactly endeared himself well during this Inner Circle/ATT feud with his iffy promos, getting the win with a frog splash in tribute to his friend Eddie Guerrero was a heartwarming gesture — especially with Full Gear falling on the 16th anniversary of Eddie’s tragic passing.
  • The reign of AEW Women’s Champ Dr. Britt Baker DMD continues on after she beat Tay Conti in a decent match that had a lofty challenge of keeping pace with the high-quality matches that came before it. To her credit, Tay Conti was able to keep pace with Dr. Britt, proving herself a worthy challenger for the DMD’s championship.
  • In an excellent tag team bout for the AEW World Tag Team Titles, the Lucha Brothers foiled FTR’s cheating ways to retain their gold. Per usual, these two teams provided a thrilling contest that showed why AEW has one of the best tag divisions in all of wrestling. The finish wherein a mask-wearing Cash Wheeler was pinned despite not being the legal man is certainly designed to build towards a future match — specifically a match at AAA’s upcoming Triplemania Regia show on December 4th.
  • The big story that surrounded the Cody Rhodes/PAC vs. Malakai Black/Andrade el Idolo tag match was that neither team really worked together as a team. Cody & PAC came away with the victory after PAC pinned Andrade. Arn Anderson also made his presence known by pulling out the Glock and laying a beating on Andrade’s assistant Jose.
  • On the Buy-In, Hikaru Shida & Thunder Rosa bested the team of Nyla Rose & Jamie Hayter in a possible preview of the next round of the TBS Championship Tournament.

Marc Quill is the editor of RingCrashers, GateCrashers’ home for all your All Elite Wrestling and indie wrestling needs. He’s also the web novelist behind Skye Emery: Bluebird, which you can read here. You can chat with him about wrestling, comics, and stuff in general on @MarcQuill on Twitter.

Categories
Wrestling

AEW Dynamite Recap | 11/10/21 | From Indianapolis, IN

It’s almost time for Full Gear, a big event that’s shaping up to be one of the biggest shows in All Elite Wrestling history, but before that, we’ve got a couple of more stops, including an exciting go-home edition of Dynamite that saw a quality night of wrestling action and angles to advance the big matches of Full Gear. So, what went down exactly? Let’s find out together, shall we?

Previously on All Elite Wrestling…

Dynamite results from 11/3/21 (Episode 109)

  • Kenny Omega def. Alan Angels via pinfall (8:01) after two consecutive V-Triggers. After the match, Omega attempted to hit the One-Winged Angel on Angels onto a steel chair until “Hangman” Adam Page intervened.
  • Malakai Black claimed that there would be someone else who would gunning for Cody Rhodes… someone particularly close to him.
  • CM Punk talked about Jon Moxley’s real-life absence due to entering an inpatient alcohol treatment program and challenged Eddie Kingston to apologize to him on Rampage.
  • An interview with the SuperKliq turned into a brawl as Jurassic Express and Christian Cage got revenge on Adam Cole and the Young Bucks. The brawl ended with Christian hitting the Con-Chair-To on a lifeless Cole.
  • FTR def. Aerostar & Samuray Del Sol via a cheap pinfall (8:30) to retain their AAA Tag Team Championships.
  • The Inner Circle named the American Top Team members they wanted to face at Full Gear: Junior Dos Santos, Andrei Arlovski, and Dan Lambert.
  • Jamie Hayter def. Anna Jay via pinfall (5:56) to advance in the TBS Championship Tournament after taking advantage of a distraction caused by Rebel (not Reba) and Dr. Britt Baker. After the match, the heels attempted to beat down Anna, but were stopped by Tay Conti and Thunder Rosa.
  • MJF proclaimed that Darby Allin couldn’t beat him in a straight wrestling match, to which the face-painted skateboarder responded by saying that he’ll do just that. This would lead to a fight where Darby got the better of Maxwell.
  • Andrade el Idolo def. Cody Rhodes via pinfall (10:33) with help from FTR, who snuck from under the ring to hit Cody with their AAA Tag Titles. A beatdown by FTR and Andrade was stopped when the Lucha Brothers made the save.
  • Miro def. Orange Cassidy via submission (7:27) with the Game Over to advance to the World Title Eliminator Finals. Bryan Danielson, Miro’s opponent at Full Gear, confronted him following the match.

Rampage results from 11/5/21 (Episode 13)

  • Bryan Danielson def. Anthony Bowens via submission (9:04) with the LeBell Lock in a match made by Tony Khan earlier in the day.
  • CM Punk and Eddie Kingston engaged in a war of words where Eddie accused Punk of being a “narcissistic bitch” who judged him fifteen years ago, to which Punk responded by calling Eddie a “bum”. Words turned into fists as the two men fought with a match for Full Gear eventually signed.
  • Red Velvet def. The Bunny via pinfall (3:34) to advance in the TBS Championship Tournament, where she will face Jade Cargill next.
  • Adam Cole def. John Silver via pinfall (11:03) with his patented running knee to the face.

It’s Wednesday Night You Know What That Means.

Direct from the Indiana Farmers’ Coliseum in Indianapolis, IN (an arena that literally has Garfield the cat as its mascot), it’s the final AEW Dynamite before Full Gear this Saturday

Match 1: Bryan Danielson vs. Rocky Romero

The American Dragon and Azucar opened Dynamite with a hard-hitting affair (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

The Story So Far

This match, made last week on Rampage, pits The American Dragon against NJPW’s Rocky Romero of the CHAOS faction. Bryan’s set for the World Title Eliminator Finals on Saturday against Miro, and he’s got a tough test ahead of him tonight.

The Match

Danielson & Romero do the respectful handshake as the bell sounds and we get an exchange of holds to start. Danielson targets Rocky’s leg, but that gets turned into an armbar by Rocky. More back and forth action as Rocky eventually sends Danielson to the outside. 

On the outside, Orange Cassidy confronts Danielson and puts his hands up in the air. Rocky takes advantage and hits a suicide dive to Danielson. In a moment of irony, Danielson traps Rocky in the Romero Special for a bit.

Rocky nails Bryan with a springboard tornado DDT, then trapping Dragon into the ropes. A well-placed missile dropkick sends Bryan to the outside. Rocky uses the steel steps as a launchpad to fly right into Danielson with a diving hurricanrana. Back in the ring, Rocky maintains the offensive attack with a modified sliced bread. 1… 2.. NO!

Danielson gets back on the attack with rolling elbows and the bridging German suplex, but that gets only a two. He places Rocky in the corner and goes to work on him. Planting him on the top turnbuckle, Bryan’s got something dangerous in mind. Avalanche back suplex? Nope, as Rocky turns that into a crossbody-esque manuever. 1… 2… not quite, but Rocky quickly applies the cross armbreaker right as Bryan kicks out!

The American Dragon is able to muster up some strength to deadlift Rocky and hit a powerbomb to escape the submission. Both men begin to trade strikes with one another as this match is going down the wire. Armbar attempt by Rocky is reversed into an ankle lock by Danielson instead. Rocky escapes that ankle lock and manages to get the armbar anyway, but Bryan turns that into a schoolboy pin for the close two.

Bryan reverses Rocky’s attempted shiranui and drags him to the ring to get him into position for the double clutch stomps! Bryan tries to turn that into a LeBell Lock, but Rocky manages to block taht. This forces Bryan to lock in a Tequila Sunrise instead. Romero submits almost instantly.

Bryan Danielson def. Rocky Romero via submission (10:51)

Inner Circle Town Hall

Dan Lambert and American Top Team had the last laugh on the Inner Circle (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

As the Inner Circle makes their entrance on the ramp, they’re jumped from behind by American Top Team and the Men of the Year. Junior Dos Santos gives Sammy Guevara a strong punch in the gut to send him down. Santana is thrown into the steps. 

The ATT crew procure a table from under the ring and set it up. Ethan Page & Scorpio Sky prop Jericho up as Dan Lambert ascends the top rope. They perform a triple powerbomb on Jericho through the table! As Scorpio does his best JR impression, he boasts that this is a small taste of what’s coming to the Inner Circle on Saturday. Ethan Page then says that tonight, however, Dan Lambert will make Jericho tap out to his own submission hold. Dan locks Jericho in the Walls of Jericho as Ethan makes Jericho “tap” to the move. Lambert takes time to inform everyone that this is based on the Rocky Johnson version from 1975 Championship Wrestling from Florida. Is this what we’ll be seeing in the Minneapolis Street Fight?

Match 2: Trios Match – Dr. Britt Baker, Rebel (not Reba) & Jamie Hayter vs. Tay Conti, Anna Jay, & Thunder Rosa

Thunder Rosa unleashes her innovative offense on Rebel (not Reba) (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

The Story So Far

Dr. Britt defends her AEW Women’s Title against Tay Conti on Saturday, while Jamie Hayter defeated Conti’s best friend Anna Jay in the TBS Championship Tournament last week. An attempted 3-on-1 attack by Team DMD led to Conti and Thunder Rosa making the save to set up this match.

The Match

All six women just start off brawling with each other in the ring. Once things settle down, it’s Thunder Rosa and Dr. Britt to start us off officially. No clear advantage as Dr. Britt manages to escape Rosa’s wrath to tag in Rebel for the time being. Rebel manages to get a few strikes in on Rosa, but she just ends up on the wrong end of a dropkick, followed by a La Casadora facebreaker. Tag to Anna as she hits a suplex on Rebel. Irish whip is countered as Jamie Hayter pulls Anna out of the ring and gets a cheap shot in while Rebel runs interference. We go to commercials on that note.

As the action resumes live, Anna is able to hit Dr. Britt with a suplex and a blockbuster to create an opening. Tay Conti gets the hot tag for her team while Jamie Hayter enters the match for her team. The woman who will face Dr. Britt for the AEW Women’s Title on Saturday is running wild on Team DMD. Tay-KO on Hayter leads to a pinfall attempt that Britt breaks up. STO by Hayter on Conti, followed by the pin. Thunder Rosa stops the count as soon as she can. Things turning loose as Rebel and Conti are your legal competitors for the match. We get our finish when Rosa takes to the skies and hits a flying crossbody on Jamie Hayter at ringside, while Conti finishes off Rebel with the DDT for the 1, 2, 3.

Tay Conti, Anna Jay, & Thunder Rosa def. Dr. Britt Baker, Rebel (not Reba), & Jamie Hayter via pinfall (7:58)

Match 3: Jungle Boy vs. Anthony Bowens

Jungle Boy looked to build momentum towards Full Gear with a win against Anthony Bowens (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

The Story So Far

Weeks of antagonizing Tony Khan has led to some consequences for the Acclaimed. Last Friday, Khan booked Anthony Bowens in a match against Bryan Danielson, which Bowens lost soundly. Now tonight, Bowens takes on the red-hot Jungle Boy, hoping to slow his momentum.

The Match

In their pre-match rap, Anthony Bowens and Max Caster make fun of Jungle Boy’s stuttering, and stating that he’s so “progressive” he leaves his girlfriend to hang out with seven guys, referencing Anna Jay and the Dark Order.

Back and forth action to start off between J.B. and Bowens. Arm drag and dropkick by Jungle Boy turns the tide. Bowens regains momentum by grabbing a lock of J.B.’s hair and headbutting him. On the apron, Max Caster makes his presence known by grabbing at Jungle Boy’s leg, allowing Bowens to superkick him and land an overdrive to send us to commercial.

We return with Jungle Boy taking over as he goes after Bowens with everything he’s got. Massive dropkick and lariat by J.B. flattens Bowens. An offensive flurry by Bowens ends with a powerslam that gets a close two-count. Jungle Boy recovers and attempts to apply the Snare Trap on Bowens, but Max Caster provides a distraction. Suicide dive by J.B. silences Caster. As Jungle Boy gets on the apron, Bowens gets him by surprise and lands the draped reverse DDT for another near fall. Jungle Boy counters a Bowens move into the Snare Trap. Bowens tries in vain to crawl to reach Max Caster on the outside, but he has no choice but to tap.

Jungle Boy def. Anthony Bowens via submission (10:07)

Post-Match

Jungle Boy doesn’t even get a chance to celebrate as Bobby Fish runs in to attack him. Exploder suplex on the ropes by Fish leaves J.B. reeling. Christian Cage and Luchasaurus chase Fish from the ring, but it seems that the damage may be done.

An Uncontested Epoch?

Adam Cole and the Young Bucks are backstage where Cole introduces his old friend, Bobby Fish. The Bucks are not receptive to Fish, stating that there is no dispute that this is the era of the Elite. However, if Cole is cool with Fish, they’re cool with him. Cole proposes that Fish fights Jungle Boy this Friday on Rampage to soften him up for the SuperKliq on Saturday.

Match 4: Wardlow vs. Wheeler YUTA

Wardlow asserted his dominance by making short work of Wheeler YUTA (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

The Story So Far

Not much of anything in the way of a story, just a way to keep Wardlow prominent as MJF is set to face Darby Allin on Saturday.

The Match

Wheeler starts off fast with the offensive flurry, but Wardlow soon takes control. Powerbomb by Wardlow on Wheeler. And then another one. He goes for yet another powerbomb, before doing a final one to leave Wheeler laying on the mat. The announcers mention that MJF and Shawn Spears aren’t here due to preparing for the Full Gear match against Darby Allin on Saturday. Wardlow props up Wheeler’s lifeless body on the top rope and puts him down with the rising kneelift for the easy victory.

Wardlow def. Wheeler YUTA via pinfall (2:14)

Post-Match

Isaiah Kassidy and The Blade attack Chuck Taylor & Orange Cassidy as they’re tending to Wheeler. “Big Money” Matt Hardy steps into the ring and attacks Orange with a chair. Putting Orange’s head in between the chair, Matt hits a Twist of Fate on the Freshly-Squeezed One

CM Punk & Eddie Kingston’s War Continues

Right away from the commercial break we go to the parking lot of the arena as CM Punk and Eddie Kingston are being separated by a litany of officials and wrestlers. These two men will be fighting Saturday at Full Gear, but it’s clear that Punk and Eddie aren’t going to wait until then!. 

Match 5: Lio Rush & Dante Martin vs. Matt Sydal & Lee Moriarty

Lee Moriarty put on quite a show in an excellent tag team match on Dynamite (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

The Story So Far

There’s been a bit of an issue brewing with Lio Rush & Matt Sydal ever since the self-proclaimed LBO became Dante Martin’s mentor. Lio suggested that Dante could learn from him better than he ever could from Sydal.

The Match

Right off the gate we start with Lee and Dante kicking things off for their respective teams. Wild back and forth between the two young lions that ends in a stalemate. It’s off to Lio and Matt for the tags. Lio tries to escape Sydal, but Matt simply wants to “talk” to him. Lee gets in a shot on Lio as Sydal goes for a moonsault. Lio avoids impact while Sydal lands on his feet. Rush takes flight with a springboard Frankensteiner over the ropes. We go to a commercial with both teams in the ring and things beginning to break down.

Back from the break as Dante lands a successful sunset flip on Sydal for a convincing two-count, followed by the dropkick. With both Sydal and Dante down and out, they go to their corners and get the tags to their partners. Lee Moriarty leaps in like a house of fire and gets in his offensive flurry on Lio Rush. With moves including a cool inverted armbreaker stomp and a corkscrew uppercut, Moriarty seems to have things well in hand. Lee follows that up with an amazing modifed corkscrew ripcord facebuster. Lio soundly avoids a Matt Sydal attack and answers with the roundhouse kick, followed by an enzuiguri on Lee. Double springboard handspring elbow by Lio on Sydal and Moriarty keeps the two down.

Consecutive suicide dives by Lio on his two opponents, followed by a corkscrew variation of the Killswitch on Lee Moriarty for the very close near-fall. Dante tags into the match, looking to take to the top rope. Lio tries to go up top, but he’s intercepted by Matt Sydal. Moriarty jumps to the turnbuckle to throw Dante down, then hitting a nice running uppercut. 1… 2… NO! Moriarty and Sydal attempt to finish this match off, but Lio Rush barges in and hits the two with kicks for everyone, ending with a devastating hook kick to Moriarty. Lio tells Dante to take flight as the young upstart makes no mistake with the double-springboard moonsault for the pinfall win in this energetic match.

Lio Rush & Dante Martin def. Matt Sydal & Lee Moriarty via pinfall (10:27)

Miro’s Words To The Dragon

In a video package, Miro talks about how Bryan Danielson is nothing more but a body standing between him and his bride. He declares that Bryan will “have to say goodbye to his wife so that I can say hello to mine”.

Match 6: Dax Harwood vs. PAC

PAC, moments before getting the drop on Dax Harwood with a dropkick (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

The Story So Far

As part of the continued war between Cody Rhodes versus Malakai Black and Andrade, PAC has found himself an unlikely ally of Cody’s. FTR’s involvement is part of a monetary agreement between Andrade & MJF after the Lucha Brothers were screwed out of the AAA Tag Team Championships some weeks back. This match tonight was set up on last week’s Rampage when Dax Harwood challenged PAC to a fight for tonight.

The Match

It’s stated no wrestlers can interfere, and that Tully Blanchard is allowed to be in Dax’s corner due to having a manager’s license. 

PAC and Dax trade offense to start the match. Shoulder blocks by The Bastard on Dax is followed by the scoop slam. Dax fights back with an upkick to PAC and the two competitors exchange arm drags. The fans are electric at the action we’ve gotten so far.

Lariat by Dax flattens PAC. The Bastard recovers and hits a series of chops on Dax before referee Aubrey Edwards backs him away from the corner. Another exchange of forearms from these two competitors. German suplex off the ropes by PAC, followed by a lariat sends Dax to the outside. PAC senses the opportunity as he soars with a corkscrew diving splash on Dax, sending us to commercial.

Returning to live action, PAC and Dax are fighting on the top rope, with The Bastard eventually winning out and hitting a gigantic avalanche brainbuster on Dax! 1… 2… Harwood somehow kicks out! PAC ascends to the top rope, but Tully Blanchard stops him at the pass. Dropkick to the back of Dax by PAC. The Bastard has Dax reeling with a combo of kicks and uppercuts, but Tully wisely pulls Dax out of the way of a third strike, allowing for a brainbuster to be done. 1… 2… KICKOUT!

PAC superkicks Dax and ascends to the top, looking to hit a big move from the top. Dax meets him at the top… big back suplex from the top rope! We get some back-and-forth jockeying between the two, up until Dax crushes PAC with a stiff lariat. He hoists PAC up and gets the rebound powerbomb for the two-count. Frustrated, Dax tries to pepper PAC with uppercuts, but the last one is countered into a backslide that The Bastard eventually transitions into the Brutalizer! Dax has nowhere to go, and he’s got no choice but to tap out. 

PAC def. Dax Harwood via submission (13:59)

Post-Match

PAC refuses to release Dax from the Brutalizer as Cash Wheeler runs in to break the submission hold. Tully gets involved and allows for Cash to stomp away on PAC as the lights shut off. As they come back on, Malakai Black & Andrade el Idolo are in the ring and they proceed to help FTR lay a massive beatdown on PAC. The Lucha Brothers, along with Cody Rhodes entering through the crowd, all converge in the ring and we’ve got a big brawl going down. The faces clear the ring of the heel alliance as they stand tall.

The Hangman/Omega Contract Signing

Who will prevail in the biggest AEW World Championship match ever at Full Gear? (Credit: All Elite Wrestling)

Ahead of Kenny Omega and “Hangman” Adam Page’s contract signing, we see footage of The Dark Order and The Elite leaving the arena, per Tony Khan’s orders to prevent chaos from going down.

Back in the ring, Tony Schiavone introduces both Kenny and Hangman for their contract signing as the two make separate entrances, with Hangman’s lower-third mentioning that the Cowboy has “poor penmanship”.

With the mic in hand, Page notes that he doesn’t know what else to say and that the sooner he signs the contract, the sooner he gets to beat Kenny’s ass to win the AEW World Title. He promptly signs the match contract.

Kenny provides a rebuttal, claiming that the Elite were the ones that picked up Hangman and put him back on the horse after his failures. He says that he saw a bit of himself in Hangman, but that he was wrong all along in that assertion.

Page responds, talking about how Kenny once had a certain partner he felt that he didn’t measure up to. And now that Kenny has been AEW World Champ for over a year, maybe he’s surpassed him. The fans reacted, knowing fully well who Hangman is alluding to.

Page says that the biggest lie that Kenny has ever told him was last year after the World Title Eliminator finals when Kenny told him that he was “proud of him”. Hangman says that Kenny didn’t want a fire lit under his ass so that he wouldn’t redeem himself. 

Kenny says that he did all that because he supposedly cared about Hangman, and that there’s no telling if they’ll ever be friends again. However, he wants to have one last handshake before Saturday’s match. The two opponents shake hands as Kenny once again tells Page that “he’s proud of him”.

The cameraman hits Hangman with the camera, unmasking himself to reveal that carny piece of shit Don Callis underneath. Callis brags about how the “greatest trick that the devil pulled was making everyone forget about him”. Kenny takes a look at a bleeding Hangman and proceeds to sign the match contract with his opponent’s blood. 

We end the night with the AEW World Champion standing tall over his challenger… perhaps for the last time?

Friday on Rampage (11/12/21)

  • Jungle Boy vs. Bobby Fish 
  • Lumberjack Match: Orange Cassidy vs. “Big Money” Matt Hardy

Saturday at Full Gear (11/13/21)

  • AEW World Championship: Kenny Omega vs. “Hangman” Adam Page
  • AEW Women’s World Championship: Dr. Britt Baker DMD vs. Tay Conti
  • Falls Count Anywhere: The SuperKliq (Adam Cole and the Young Bucks) vs. Christian Cage & Jurassic Express (Jungle Boy and Luchasaurus)
  • Darby Allin vs. MJF
  • CM Punk vs. Eddie Kingston
  • Minneapolis Street Fight: The Inner Circle vs. American Top Team & Men of the Year
  • Cody Rhodes & PAC vs. Malakai Black & Andrade el Idolo
  • World Championship Eliminator Finals: Bryan Danielson vs. Miro
  • The Buy-In: Hikaru Shida & Thunder Rosa vs. Jamie Hayter & Nyla Rose

The Last Word

A solid go-home show marked by tremendous in-ring action and a hot closing segment.

The tag match between Lio Rush & Dante Martin vs. Lee Moriarty & Matt Sydal was easily the match of the evening. For his actual in-ring debut (not counting his short appearance during the Casino Battle Royal earlier this year), Lio Rush brought his A-Game and proved why he’s the Man of the Hour. That isn’t to say that Dante Martin & Lee Moriarty didn’t impress on their own. The two managed to create their own pace to help accelerate this match into an exciting barnburner that helped keep the quality of action along. It’s not every day that a Bryan Danielson match is somehow outdone in terms of quality, but this tag team match managed to do just that.

And speaking of the American Dragon, his match with Rocky Romero was a fantastic way to open the show, with Bryan operating at the same level he’s been going at ever since arriving at All Elite Wrestling. While Dragon had a hard-hitting match just days away from his World Title Eliminator Finals bout with Miro, his opponent is a bit fresher. Will that factor in on Saturday?

Adam Cole bringing in Bobby Fish as his hitman of sorts to take Jungle Boy out ahead of the tag team match on Saturday brought an undisputed amount of hints with it. Whether this is a one-off deal or if there’s more to this long-time friendship materializing in AEW is anyone’s guess.

The contract signing segment served to give Kenny a bit of heel heat heading into the PPV by having him score the upper hand on Hangman one last time. And based on tradititonal wrestling logic, Kenny getting his moment in the sun on the go-home show most certainly means that he loses on PPV, which should hopefully alleviate fears that AEW won’t pull the trigger on Hangman winning. 

While AEW advanced the World Title match and the Minneapolis Street Fight (which similarly also had the heel American Top Team standing tall to telegraph the outcome on Saturday), we didn’t get an advancement angle for Darby Allin vs. MJF, with only a video package reminding us that this match is coming.

Meanwhile, CM Punk vs. Eddie Kingston’s match got a wild backstage segment where the two exchanged barbs at each other while multiple people kept them separate. There won’t be that kind of separation to keep those two apart for Saturday, that’s for certain.

The hard sell for Full Gear began in earnest with an enjoyable Dynamite filled with in-ring action that lives up to AEW’s all elite moniker, and we’ll see if Rampage can continue that momentum.

RingCrashers’ complete Full Gear predictions can be found here, while special guest writer Charlie Davis offers their own personal take on the long journeys of Hangman Page and Kenny Omega with an essay you can find here. Meanwhile, you can find me live-tweeting all the Full Gear action tomorrow night on my Twitter.

Marc Quill is the editor of RingCrashers, GateCrashers’ home for all your All Elite Wrestling and indie wrestling needs. He’s also the web novelist behind Skye Emery: Bluebird, which you can read here. You can chat with him about wrestling, comics, and stuff in general on @MarcQuill on Twitter.

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AEW Full Gear 2021 Preview & Predictions

All Elite Wrestling’s fourth and final pay-per-view extravaganza of the year goes down this Saturday when Full Gear descends upon Minneapolis’ Target Center. Featuring the biggest AEW World Championship title match in the company’s history and the finals of the World Title Eliminator Tournament, this event’s bound to be one of the best shows of the year. The RingCrashers team is here to give you a run down of the big matches of the evening and their predictions on who’s gonna win.

Credit: AEW

How We Got Here

The finals of this year’s World Championship Eliminator Tournament took a bit of a detour when Jon Moxley was replaced by Miro as Orange Cassidy’s opponent after Moxley announced that he’d be taking some time away from the ring to enter an inpatient alcohol treatment program. “God’s Favorite Champion” would end up winning this match to advance to the Finals. Meanwhile, The American Dragon defeated Eddie Kingston in an all-timer match to punch his ticket into the finals.

Predictions

Marc Quill: While the intrigue of a prospective Danielson/Hangman title match does seem enticing, I think Miro gets the win here to set him up as Hangman’s first challenger. A loss against Adam Page won’t hurt Miro in the slightest and would further his whole God’s Forsaken Champion angle.

Justen Jess: If I was booking this, I’d pick Bryan Danielson. I think there’s an interesting story of Danielson (who I think secretly is a heel) wanting to fight “the best”, but settling for Hangman. But I think Miro is the titan, the unstoppable tower that is a very different opponent than anything either Hangman or Kenny has fought all year. Miro wins, and we get a new color of red to describe Danielson’s chest post-match.

MK Fell: The person who wins this match is me, because I get to watch these two powerhouses beat the hell out of each other. Either one of them as the next #1 contender is very good. I hope it doesn’t mean the end of Miro cutting promos on God, though.

Barrett Tribe: Danielson wins! Omega gets involved in the Page/Danielson title match! THREE WAY DANCE AT THE NEXT PPV!!!! MIRO TRIES TO KILL GOD.

Credit: AEW

How We Got Here

Weeks of chest-puffing, angry promos, and Dan Lambert and Chris Jericho throwing every insult imaginable at one another has led to a massive ten-man tag match between the Inner Circle and American Top Team.

Predictions

Marc Quill: This match is likely to just be a fun schmozz of a match for the crowd, and the inclusion of Dan Lambert as part of the ATT contingent competing in the match pretty much guarantees he’s gonna take more than a few bumps. That said, look for The Inner Circle to win out here.

Justen Jess: I think the Inner Circle wins here because every Jericho angle goes on way too long and Jericho wins at a PPV. I doubt we’ll at least get some fun segments like with the Stadium Stampede, but I can live in hope? It feels like this match should be pre-recorded especially with so many shoot fighters.

MK Fell: This angle hasn’t been fun for me in the slightest, so I’m really hoping the Inner Circle win so Men of the Year can go do something more interesting (and less homophobic) again. Wake me up when this match is over.

Barrett Tribe: Lots of potatoes in this match. Inner Circle wins. Dan Lambert shows up on Dynamite for one more whiney promo before getting run out of the building, mayhaps by golf cart.

Credit: AEW

How We Got Here

By virtue of being at the top of AEW’s women rankings (with a 30-3 record as of 11/10/21), Tay Conti was named Dr. Britt’s opponent for Full Gear a few weeks ago.

Marc Quill: Though the result of Dr. Britt retaining the title is pretty much inevitable, this match should at least be entertaining.

Justen Jess: I don’t think that Tay’s the face that booking wants the belt on. We know it’s Thunder Rosa, and nothing has really been built up to give Tay a big feud with Britt. The TBS Championship has subsumed the singular mandatory women’s segment on AEW the past few weeks, and this match sadly feels like an afterthought. Britt wins, Tay deserves better.

MK Fell: I love Tay Conti, I do, but Britt hasn’t had the belt for long enough and frankly they didn’t give this feud enough screentime to get anyone excited about it.

Barrett Tribe: Britt Baker will win in a spirited contest. Anna and Rosa will run the Dental Assistants out of ringside. Tay will lose but come out of it looking stronger. Tay is a future champ, but Baker is the belt’s legitimizer.

Credit: AEW

How We Got Here

After Los Super Ranas, sorry, FTR won the AAA Tag Team Championships off of the Lucha Bros last month, FTR has been feuding with the Lucha Bros and wanting to get the AEW Tag Team Championship back.

Predictions

Marc Quill: It’s pretty much a given that Rey Fenix & Penta El Zero M retain here, but look for this match to be a thrilling encounter from start to finish.

Justen Jess: I expect the Lucha Bros to retain their title here. I think a two-month reign for the Lucha Bros would be a disgrace.

MK Fell: Full agree with Justen here. If it were any other tag team, maybe, but FTR has already had the belts once and to give them the championship back after such a short run for the Lucha Bros would just be a really bad look.

Barrett Tribe: The Lucha Brothers need a long reign, if only so we can see them in marquee matches at all the PPVs and events. Luchas pick up the win. FTR can always say they are the true champions since, as AAA title holders, they represent America and Mexico. “That’s TWO COUNTRIES! Mejores chicos, adios.”

Credit: AEW

How We Got Here

After a loss in the AEW World Title Eliminator Tournament to Bryan Danielson, Eddie Kingston was incensed and went on a bit of a tirade backstage. Unfortunately for him, this interrupted CM Punk, and it set off a wave of hostility between the two. On last week’s Rampage, Kingston unleashed fifteen years of frustration in a promo, calling out Punk for 15 years of passing him by.

Marc Quill: This is one match I’ve been looking forward to since they teased it on Rampage. With that in mind, while I wouldn’t be surprised if CM Punk won, I’m honestly pulling for Eddie Kingston to win here. His excellent essay on The Players Tribune makes it really easy for me to root for him in this scenario.

MK Fell: To be completely honest, I do not care who wins this match. I would be VERY surprised if this isn’t my Match of the Night (okay, tied with Omega vs Hangman). Do I want Eddie to win? Yes, I’m biased, I love him to pieces and he deserves a huge win. Will I be upset if he doesn’t, given how much heart and soul he and Punk will pour into this match? Not in the sense that I think it’ll be a bad decision, but more because I’ll be sad on his behalf.

https://mobile.twitter.com/tde_gif/status/1458618596389801985

Justen Jess: I don’t know who you have win this match, but I want it to be Eddie Kingston. I don’t think it will be, though, as I think AEW wants to have CM Punk’s first loss to be to someone they plan on crowning a future champ. The storyline has been there, though. The story of Punk’s matches have been about him being slower, going by on wiles and veteran instincts. What if the Mad King wins on sheer aggression and passion?

Barrett Tribe: CM Punk is going over here. Has to. Eddie is building momentum toward an eventual TNT or AEW title run, but he’s not the right guy to give Punk his first loss. Punk is a draw and needs to keep his mystique for as long as possible. Eddie wins by losing. He’s Rocky.

Credit: AEW

Since September, MJF has antagonized Darby Allin, attempting to get into his head mentally by invoking his uncle’s death in a drunk driving accident, but to no avail. When that didn’t work, Max opted to instead use brutal beatdowns to sideline Darby and mentor Sting. This feud would intensify on the 10/27 Dynamite when Darby & Sting outsmarted MJF and the Pinnacle with a surprise attack.

Predictions

Marc Quill: This match could honestly go either way, but I think we have Darby Allin getting the win as he proves Max wrong. Plus, you need to accelerate the MJF/Wardlow fissure, so perhaps a failed cheating attempt spells the end for Max?

MK Fell: It kind of looks to me like they’re setting Wardlow up to turn his back on MJF soon, which I think will happen faster if MJF loses here. I guess I’m more interested to see if Darby goes this whole match without losing his composure? Not sure what the others might think about it, though.

Justen Jess: This is a match that is ridiculously hard for me to put the pulse on. Darby Allin’s last three losses this year have been against CM Punk, a handicap match against the Men of the Year, and Miro for losing the belt. MJF meanwhile has only lost to Chris Jericho in Singles competition this year. I think Darby wins here, but I think it’s going to get ugly. I expect both Darby and MJF are going to have some moments of lost composure.

Barrett Tribe: Good will overcome evil. Allin is going to out-wrestle MJF until MJF snaps. This is going to be an opportunity for Allin to showcase his pure wrestling skill on a PPV. MJF will lose his goddamn mind and go pure CZW about ¾ of the way through. Allin wins by submission.

Credit: AEW

How We Got Here

I feel like you could write a book on what’s transpired between Christian and Jurassic Express and the Elite just since All Out, where the first thing that Adam Cole did upon entering AEW was kick Jungle Boy in the face. The two groups have gone against each other repeatedly, with Christian taking an indietaker on a ramp, Luchasaurus being powerbombed through a table, and Jungle Boy getting thrown off a stage. It was just last week that Christian Cage subjected Adam to a one-man Conchairto, and then this match was announced.

Marc Quill: The SuperKliq probably get the win here, and given the trajectory of the title match and the possibility of Omega losing to Hangman Page, wouldn’t it be interesting if Cole and the Bucks won while Kenny lost? We’ve already seen tensions between Omega and Cole play out ever so slightly, so this might help that along.  

Justen Jess: To remove the possibility of anyone interfering in the championship match later that evening, I think Christian and Jurassic Express win, in a violent brutal fashion. In fact, after that Conchairto last week, I wouldn’t be surprised if maybe some…heelish behavior occurred. 

MK Fell: To be fair, the Superkliq losing doesn’t necessarily mean they won’t interfere in the championship match. And I agree that them winning and Kenny losing puts tension in their relationship— I wanted the inverse at Double or Nothing, after all. That said, I think Jurassic Express and Christian win here. I can’t wait for the flippy stuff and the possibility for a rematch down the road… maybe with some Trios belts on the line?

Barrett Tribe: I’m going against the grain and giving it to The Super Elite. The show is already face heavy by my predictions. Neither team really needs a win. Jungle Boy will be the star though, bank on it. He’s been losing more of the jungle stuff as time has gone on and I’m hoping he abandons the silly parts of the gimmick soon. Maybe he can turn into “Jungle” Jack Perry like JR wants him to.

Credit: AEW

How We Got Here

It’s been a long, long, long road to get to this point, but we’re finally here. What started at the dawn of AEW’s inception seems to be reaching its breaking point. The last time these two faced each other one-on-one was in last year’s World Title Eliminator Final with Kenny defeating Hangman in a spirited bout. What followed was Kenny’s descent to the dark side after capturing the AEW World Title from Jon Moxley and holding it for nearly a year with the Elite at his side. Hangman re-entered the title picture after winning the Casino Ladder Match on the two-year anniversary Dynamite and has returned more confident than he has ever been.

Predictions

Marc Quill: The long and short of it is that Hangman Page finally achieves his destiny to become AEW Champion. This has to be it. AEW has generally been good with giving fans what they want and not blueballing them constantly, so anything but a Hangman win would be a mistake here. Adding to that is the end of the go-home Dynamite where Kenny got the upper hand on Hangman, which generally means in wrestling terms that Kenny is gonna take the fall on Saturday. Look for some real Cowboy Shit coming this Saturday.

Justen Jess: Hangman wins, of course, but the question is going to be how. Do any of the Elite back up Kenny? Who corners Hangman? Will Kenny reach deep into his reserves and attempt a Phoenix Splash in a moment of desperation? Will the One-Winged Angel be attempted? 

MK Fell: I’ll say it— not crowning Hangman here would be disgraceful. Kenny’s run as champion has been a blast, and I’m not the only person who’d be happy to see it continue for a while longer, but… it’s time for Cowboy Shit. He deserves it.

Barrett Tribe: To piggy back off of Justen; over the last couple of years, Omega has slowly removed all of his past moves that were references to Ibushi, Okada and anything he was doing in Japan. Lately we’ve been seeing them creep back into his repertoire. Kenny is going to pull out everything he can, likely attempting a Buckshot or Deadeye alongside a host of classics, but Page’s heart will win the day. Expectations are high but I’m thinking Meltzer will give it over five stars.

Andrade El Idolo & Malakai Black vs Cody Rhodes & PAC

How We Got Here

Malakai Black has tortured the Nightmare Family for months, and Andrade El Idolo has tried to mess with PAC and the Lucha Bros for just as long. The two storylines have coincided now, and we get this very fun match lineup now.

Marc Quill: Andrade El Idolo & Malakai Black will pick up the win here, with the “Nightmare traitor” that Black hinted at last week playing a role in the win.

Justen Jess: Even a month ago I would have thought this was a weird match, but it’s got promise. I’m leaning towards Andrade and Malakai in this one, as I think we need another heel victory here. I expect it will be a fun match, and Cody takes the pin.

MK Fell: Ah yes, the last-minute match announced during the Go Home show. I’m not complaining, there’s just always one. Andrade and Malakai win this one for me, hands-down. I did just imagine how short Pac is going to look next to all three of them and had a nice chuckle about it.

Buy-In: Nyla Rose & Jamie Hayter vs Thunder Rosa and Hikaru Shida

How We Got Here

This match to open the night at Full Gear will feature four of the women who are in the TBS Championship tournament. In the second round, Nyla is set to face Shida, while Thunder Rosa will take on Jamie Hayter. This should be a high-energy tag match to help kick the night off in full gear, so to speak.