Before the actual show began, we saw Tony Schiavone standing outside next to a plane and he talked about this night’s contract signing between Chris Jericho and Cody. Then Dustin Rhodes and Cody came out of that plane, the two brothers hugged each other and then Cody and Schiavone entered a limo.
Then we saw a video package which showed last week’s draw between Jon Moxley and Pac. Kenny Omega saved Moxley from Pac’s attack and then the two men went face to face. After that, Moxley went to Tony Khan’s office who told him that they couldn’t sanction his match and that it wouldn’t count to his win/loss record. Then the commentators checked in and also added that the match between Moxley and Omega at Full Gear will be unsanctioned.
Opinion: The contract signing later that night will get probably the most attention even though the fight for the Tag Team Championships will be in the main event. Good to see this little video recap and be up-to-date, but nothing special in the first minutes.
“Hangman” Adam Page vs. Sammy Guevara
The match was good, but nothing outstanding and after about eight minutes Page was able to hit Guevara with the Buckshot Lariat for the win. After the match, the Hangman grabbed a mic and said that it wasn’t going that well for him lately. He added that he’ll do “some real cowboy shit” and take Pac’s head off at Full Gear. The audience chanted for him.
Opinion: Good opening match and good to see Page back at the mic again. Guevara continues to seem like the weakest part of the Inner Circle, let’s see how this will develop.
Shanna vs Hikaru Shida
This match between the two Stardom wrestlers was really good. They got more than 10 minutes and showed several great moves near falls. Shida was able to get away with the victory after she hit Shanna with a Running Knee Strike.
Opinion: When you look at WWE’s NXT, the women’s division gets much more attention and in the light of this, it’s a good move from AEW to give these two women so much time. The quality of the match surprised me, and I’m pleased to see more from them.
Presentation of the AEW Tag Titles
Chris Van Vliet was on the stage and introduced Ricky Morton and Robert Gibson, who entered the stage holding the AEW Tag Titles. They noted that they bet Ole and Arn Anderson 33 years ago in the same building, but suddenly got attacked from behind by Santana and Ortiz. Santana and Oritz picked up Morton and sent him through a piece of the stage. The Young Bucks came out and chased off Santana and Ortiz.
Opinion: There’s probably no better way to get heat than such a segment. I thought that they would just beat them up a bit, and so I was shocked when they really sent Morton through the stage. Santana and Ortiz are great as heels and compared to the other member of the Inner Circle Guevara they look extremely dangerous.
Trent Barreta, Chuck Taylor and Orange Cassidy vs. John Silver, Alex Reynolds and QT Marshall
Before this match started, we saw Cody and Schiavone in the limousine. Cody noted that his mother shared for ten years the locker room with Chris and Schiavone said that he should take all his emotions to let them drive him in Baltimore.
The Best Friends and Cassidy were dressed as Rick and Morty. The match didn’t even take four minutes and the highlight of this match were surely Cassidy’s moves while he kept his hands in his pockets as usual. The Best Friends and Cassidy got away with the victory to go over.
Opinion: Interesting way to advert Rick and Morty. The Best Friends are perfect for such segments and Cassidy is just really unique. The segment ahead of this match with Cody and Schiavone was a bit meaningless, but I see that they want to drive the attention to the contract signing.
Chris Jericho came out first and sat down at the table which was positioned on the stage. Then Cody and Schiavone came out, Cody took place at the other ending of the table and Schiavone hosted this segment. He said that there will be three judges and a 60-minutes time limit for their title match at Full Gear. Cody signed the contract and tossed it over to Jericho. The AEW Champion talked trash and also noted that he’ll teach Cody how it is to be a loser.
Jericho added that he’s a champion, has class and then extended his hand. Cody shook his hand, then pulled Y2J closer for a staredown and a big “AEW” chant broke out. Jericho said that they could stay there all night, but Cody might be needed somewhere else.
Suddenly, Guevara appeared on the big screen on the stage and was in the parking lot. Jake Hager was shown beating up Dustin Rhodes and slamming a car door on his arm. Cody, MJF, and two security guards ran into the parking lot and checked on Dustin. Jericho was shown and lit a cigar, then he, Hager and Guevara entered a vehicle that drove off.
Opinion: A great segment. Jericho is my favourite superstar on the microphone in AEW’s roster and proved that once more. The audience was really hyped, and this shows that AEW does a good work bringing the title match over. Hager once more looked like a pure destroyer.
Kenny Omega, Matt Jackson and Nick Jackson vs. Kip Sabian, Jack Evans and Angelico
As you would expect from these six superstars, we saw several high-flying moves and an entertaining match. In the end, it was Omega who hit Evans with a V-Trigger Knee and the One Winged Angel for the win. After the match, the Young Bucks celebrated with the fans and hugged ones who wore Rick and Morty masks. The fans grabbed their arms, unmasked themselves and, Santana and Ortiz appeared. They tried to beat up the Young Bucks but ran away as Omega came to save his partners.
Opinion: The match itself was entertaining and the post-match angle was another good build-up for their match at Full Gear. Additionally, another good way to advert Rick and Morty.
Jon Moxley’s promo
“The Librarians” Peter Avalon and Leva Bates came out and Avalon worked as a heel on the microphone while they made their way to the ring. Moxley went through the crowd, jumped over the barricade, entered the ring and gave Avalon a Paradigm Shift DDT.
Moxley grabbed the mic and started his promo. He seemed aggressive and talked about that his match against Omega will be unsanctioned. He then added: “In other words, when Jon Moxley beats your boy, the so-called greatest wrestler in the world, Kenny Omega, we’re just going to pretend like it never happened.”
He added that AEW could take their win/loss record and shove it up their ass. Moxley continued to say that he is unsanctionable and noted that if they would have thought that he’s out of control they haven’t seen anything yet.
He said he would give Omega a beating which hasn’t been seen in this country for decades and closed his promo with the words: “Kiss my ass and stay the hell out of my way.”
Opinion: Finally, we saw Moxley’s real potential at the mic. He sold the feud between him and Omega in a few minutes better than you could do it with several brawls. Hopefully, we’ll see such promos of him more frequent.
“The Lucha Brothers” Pentagon Jr. and Rey Fenix vs. “SCU” Frankie Kazarian and Scorpio Sky to declare the first AEW Tag Team Champions
The match took about 12 minutes and both teams had several good moments and chances to get away with the victory. Especially Fenix showed his incredible high-flying and in-ring ability. During the final phase of the match, Pentagon Jr. and his partner set up Sky for their finisher, but suddenly, Sky countered into an Inside Cradle and Kazarian took out Fenix. The ref made the three count and SCU were crowned as the new AEW Tag Team Champions. Kazarian and Sky celebrated with the titles before the show went off air.
Opinion: An entertaining match, but I expected a bit more since it was the first-ever match for the AEW Tag Team Championships and we had a lot of star power in this fight. Besides, the ending was much worse than the match itself. However, it was better to see such an ending since it was a clean ending. It will be interesting to see who the first challengers for the title will be.
Sadly, the main event was worse than I expected due to its finish. It was a good match and a clean ending, but just nothing surprising or outstanding in it. The rest of the episode was great. AEW does a great job and I’m really looking forward to Full Gear since there are several outstanding matches on the card.