Date: November 9, 2019
Location: Royal Farms Arena, Baltimore, Maryland
Commentators: Jim Ross, Excalibur
Despite being less than a month and a half after the debut of their weekly television show, it is already time for their next pay per view. The big main event tonight is Cody vs. Chris Jericho for the latter’s World Title, but if Cold loses he can never challenge for the title again. I’m not sure what is going to happen there and that makes things more interesting. Let’s get to it.
Preshow: Britt Baker vs. Bea Priestly
There is a ramp to the ring for an old WCW feel. It’s a fight to start with Baker taking her down but not being able to get in the Lockjaw. Priestly is right back with some kicks to the chest and choking across the ropes until Baker is able to fight back up with some forearms of her own. A double clothesline gives us a double knockdown and it’s Baker up first with a Sling Blade.
Priestly is right back with a bridging belly to back suplex for two and it’s off to an arm trap choke to keep Baker in trouble. The slow crawl gets Baker over to the ropes for the break so Baker is right back up with a Canadian Destroyer for two of her own. A Paige Turner looks to set up Lockjaw but Priestly stacks her up for two instead. Baker tries it again and this time Priestly has to tap at 11:22.
Rating: C. Just a match for the most part and it’s time for Baker to get closer to the title scene, even though Riho already beat her. I would have gone with Priestly winning here as she seems like someone who could take the title from Riho and then drop it to Baker (or Allie) eventually but they’re going with the Baker push again, which is far from a terrible idea. Just push someone up against Riho though.
Post match here are Brandi Rhodes and Awesome Kong with the latter laying out Priestly. Brandi whips out a knife (yes a knife) and it’s time for a haircut.
The opening video focuses on the pressure to prove that you are the best over and over, including tonight.
Young Bucks vs. Proud And Powerful
Just call them Santana and Ortiz. The Rock N Roll Express is in the front row. Ortiz hits Matt in the face for an early cheap shot and everything breaks down in a hurry. Matt spears Santana down and it’s the stereo dives out to the floor. We settle down to the Bucks working on Santana’s arm and it’s off to Ortiz, who gets armdragged into an armbar. Santana: “WHAT HAPPENED???”
Ortiz slaps Santana’s foot but that’s not a tag, which does not please the fans. Now the referee doesn’t see a tag to Santana and it’s another armbar. The referee’s shirt gets untucked and it’s Ortiz sneaking in for a cheap shot to Nick. Everything breaks down and it’s a Boston crab to Nick and a Gory Stretch to Matt, with everyone standing together in one big ball for a heck of a visual. That lets LAX beat on Nick with some shots to the back but it’s off to Matt pretty quickly.
Everything breaks down and a big dive takes Ortiz down on the floor. Nick goes leg first into the post though and Ortiz is all over the injury, like any good heel should be. That’s not enough as Nick gets thrown at the Rock N Roll Express, with Santana blowing his nose at them for a bonus. Back in and Matt gets knocked to the floor, setting up another shot to Nick’s legs to cut off the comeback bid.
There’s a dragon screw legwhip for two but Nick uses the good leg for the superkick. Matt comes in for the rolling northern lights suplexes, including a double version for a double near fall. The standing moonsault/top rope splash combination gets two but Nick gets pulled out to the floor. Ortiz rolls Santana backwards so he can cutter Matt for two as we hit the fifteen minute mark.
The Street Sweeper is countered with a belly to belly suplex for a little Steiner Brothers and it’s Nick coming back in for a double superkick. The powerbomb/Sliced Bread #2 combination gets two on Ortiz but the leg gives out on a Meltzer Driver attempt. Nick spits his gum at Ortiz so Ortiz puts it in his mouth, meaning it’s Nick forearming both of them at once. That’s cut off by a powerbomb though and the Street Sweeper gives Santana the pin at 21:10.
Rating: B+. This was exactly what fans wanted to see out of this match as it really was two of the biggest teams in the world today going at it on the big stage. That being said, they really need to cut out the dives, cutters and false finishes as they go through so many of them in a single match that it takes away the impact they have. It’s one thing if it happens here, but how many matches are going to have several of them all over again?
Post match Sammy Guevara comes in for the beatdown, bringing in the Express for the save. Ricky Morton hits a Canadian Destroyer and a suicide dive to stand tall.
Here’s the rest of the card that you already paid to see.
Hangman Page vs. Pac
Pac beat him a few weeks ago and Page wants revenge. It’s a brawl to start with Pac being sent outside, which of course means a dive. Back in and Pac gets his knees up to block a running shooting star press and it’s time for Pac to hammer away. A running knee in the corner gets two and there’s a kick to the face for a bonus. Pac snapmares him into a chinlock as the pace continues to go slowly.
The delay lets JR rant about refereeing, though clarifying that this match’s referee is doing it right. Pac’s running kick to the head rocks Page again and it’s time to stare at the crowd. The chinlock goes on again, with JR saying Page looks like Tony Schiavone getting out of a tanning booth. Pac misses a middle rope Phoenix splash and Page hits a big clothesline. A spinebuster sends Pac to the apron where Page hits a Boss Man Slam.
The middle rope moonsault to the floor drops Pac again but he’s fine enough to roll to the floor before the Buckshot Lariat can launch. Page goes out after him and gets brainbustered onto an open chair. For reasons of modern wrestling, that isn’t two weeks/months away from the ring but rather Page coming back inside and telling Pac to kick him harder. Pac gets crotched on top so Page hits a super fall away slam to put them both down.
The Buckshot Lariat is countered into the snap German suplex but Page is right back with a pop up powerbomb. The Deadeye is countered into the Brutalizer but they fall into the ropes for the break. Page can’t hit the Buckshot again but he’s able to block a low blow. A hard clothesline sets up the Deadeye for the pin on Pac at 18:51.
Rating: B. So in a match where someone too a brainbuster onto a steel chair, he wins the match five minutes later? Sure why not. They beat each other up well here and it gives Page the big win, though I’m not sure where he is supposed to go from here. We’ve done Jericho vs. Page already and there isn’t anything else for him to do at the moment. Maybe we get a trilogy match, but at least round two was good.
We look at the preshow.
Shawn Spears vs. Joey Janela
Grudge match after Janela put a cigarette in Spears’ manager Tully Blanchard’s soda, so they tried to pull out his tongue with pliers. Spears chops away to start but gets knocked outside with Janela hitting a quick hurricanrana. That’s fine with Spears, who powerslams him on the floor to start in on the back.
They head inside with Spears working on the back, including a chinlock with a knee in said back. Janela’s back gets rammed into the apron and Spears ties him into the corner by the hair. That’s broken up and Spears grabs a Sharpshooter to work on the back some more. Janela makes the ropes and hits a superkick, followed by a top rope flip dive to the floor. Back in and Spears catches him on top with a superplex for two more.
Spears gets sent outside though and it’s a suicide dive (take a shot) to give Janela two again. Janela goes up top so Spears catches him with a backbreaker onto the buckle and it’s time to go for a turnbuckle pad. The referee deals with that so Tully does the spiking in a spike piledriver to knock Janela silly. A running Death Valley Driver finishes Janela at 11:28.
Rating: C. Both of these guys continue to just exist for the most part. Spears has gotten a little better, mainly because he has actually won a few things. Janela on the other hand comes off as someone who just kept showing up one day and then was allowed to have a match to make him happy. Tully getting more involved is a good idea too, and hopefully it happens more often.
Kip Sabian is glad to be teaming with the Hybrid Two because he can trust them and rely on them. Penelope Ford comes up and kisses him on the cheek, saying it’s time to bring some sex appeal to the company. Ford: “Why be bad, when you can be super bad?”
We recap the Tag Team Title tournament.
Tag Team Titles: SCU vs. Lucha Bros vs. Private Party
SCU is defending and this is one fall to a finish. Kazarian headlocks Quen down to start so Quen flips to his feet for a standoff. Fenix comes in and counters the whip to the floor, setting up the kick to Kazarian’s back. Everything breaks down for a bit until Fenix suplexes Kazarian for two. It’s Pentagon coming in for some kicks of his own, including a superkick to Kazarian’s jaw.
There’s a double clothesline and it’s off to Kassidy for a kick to Pentagon and a springboard X Factor for two. Quen takes Kassidy’s place and it’s the camel clutch into a double stomp to the back of Pentagon’s head for two more. The Bros are back with a Doomsday Dropkick to Quen, followed by a monkey flip Cannonball for their own near fall. The spike package piledriver is broken up though and Quen hits a Backstabber for two as Kazarian makes the save.
Quen hits a dropkick and brings in Sky for some kicks of his own. A slingshot cutter sets up a dragon sleeper on Fenix, who gets caught in a cutter from Kazarian. Everything breaks down and it’s time for the series of dives, with Fenix walking the ropes for a knee to Sky’s face to cut him off.
More dives ensue, with Fenix hitting a big corkscrew version onto the pile. Kazarian hits an assisted tornado DDT on Fenix for two with Private Party making the save. Quen drops the perfect shooting star on Kazarian for two more, because that move isn’t allowed to EVER get a pin. Gin and Juice is broken up and it’s the SCULater to finish Quen at 12:02.
Rating: B-. Entertaining stuff, but it feels like the kind of match that we see at least once a week around here. I like SCU retaining and Private Party taking the loss isn’t going to hurt them. The Lucha Bros or Santana/Ortiz would make great next challengers and you have to expect that to be the case in one way or another, though the latter would be more likely. It’s a fun match, but it’s been done better.
Post match the Bros beat up the champs until a third masked man runs in for the save. He unmasks as….Christopher Daniels.
Video on Riho, who is awesome and was trained by Emi Sakura, her challenger for the Women’s Title. Kenny Omega makes sure we know how big this is.
Women’s Title: Riho vs. Emi Sakura
Riho is defending and we hear about them being in the ring together in one way or another 287 times. An early test of strength goes to Sakura off a legsweep and a dropkick puts Riho down again. Riho gets sent outside but she’s back up in time to block a dive to the floor. The top rope double stomp to the apron rocks Sakura and it’s off to a half crab to keep the champ in control.
Sakura fights right back with a surfboard that doesn’t last long so Riho is up with a high crossbody for two more. A spinning Vader Bomb gives Sakura her own two and a tiger driver makes it worse, only to have Riho pop up for a fast double stomp before Sakura can get up.
Riho hammers away and hits a middle rope double stomp to put Sakura in more trouble. The top rope double stomp gets two with Sakura bridging up for the kickout. Riho is right back with a spinning pair of knees to the chest before spinning around into a rollup for a stacked up pin to retain at 11:17.
Rating: C+. Well worked, nice technical match here with Riho doing enough to make up for the size different. Sakura is hardly huge but she’s bigger than Riho, which isn’t that hard to do. Riho has to wrestle the right style to be believable and she did that here. The story worked well enough, though it was a pretty basic way to do everything. That’s fine enough, but it could have been more.
We recap the World Title match. Cody needs to win and is willing to never challenge for the title again should he not win here. Jericho is as arrogant as he can get and that is one of the best things about him. He also had Cody’s brother Dustin’s arm broken by the Inner Circle.
AEW World Title: Cody vs. Chris Jericho
Cody is challenging and has MJF with him while Jericho has Jake Hager. There is a sixty minute time limit and if we go the distance, Arn Anderson, Dean Malenko and Great Muta are here to pick a winner. The fans give Jericho a HAPPY BIRTHDAY chant and he bails to the floor at the bell. Back in and Cody works on a hammerlock to send Jericho to the ropes, meaning it’s a cartwheel from Cody for a little mind game.
Back up and Jericho grabs a headlock before shouldering Cody down. The Dustin Rhodes pop up uppercut rocks Jericho so he goes to the floor and glares at Malenko. Cody is right back with a dive (in front of the judges) and it’s time to work on the arm. Some good cranking has Jericho in trouble but he sends Cody down hard onto the ramp, with Cody coming up bleeding.
We get a breather for the doctor to check on Cody so Jericho sits down in a chair in the ring as he should. Cody comes up favoring his ribs but Jericho is right on the cut forehead in an attempt to get the doctor to stop it. Hager gets in a cheap shot behind the referee’s back and Jericho puts a knee in the ribs to drop Cody again. Cody fights up and knocks Jericho down, only to have the moonsault hit knees.
The chinlock doesn’t last long so Jericho dropkicks him down for two and we hit the chinlock with a knee in the back. The Lionsault hits raised knees as well though and Cody hits a springboard cutter (Has there been a match yet that didn’t include a cutter? The Women’s Title maybe?) to start the comeback. There’s the Disaster Kick to knock Jericho off the apron and even Cody’s mom gets in some yelling.
Back in and the Alabama Slam (with Excalibur blanking on the name) out of the corner plants Jericho again. The Figure Four goes on as Excalibur remembers the name of the Alabama Slam (JR: “DING DING DING!”) but Hager gets in a cheap shot for the save. Cody goes with a rollup instead but the kickout sends him into another shot from Hager as JR is losing his mind at the cheating. MJF yells at Hager and gets mauled for it, allowing Jericho to get in a belt shot.
The very slow cover gets two but the Judas Effect is countered into Cross Rhodes. JR wants Cody to pull….I’m going to assume leg because JR is rather unbiased but Jericho kicks out anyway. Back up and Jericho knocks him into the ropes, setting up a whipping with the weight belt. Cody fights back and puts Jericho up, only to get pulled down into the Walls in the middle of the ring. It’s broken up so Jericho tries it again, this time making it the Liontamer. Cody is in trouble and MJF throws in the towel to keep the title on Jericho at 29:33.
Rating: B-. This was a tricky one to grade and I’m going to have to let the ending sink in a bit. What matters here is finding a way around the ending, but what would matter the most here would be to have MJF turn on Cody, though you could go the other way also. Good match, but it felt like they were stalling at times. That being said, they were VERY smart to not drag this out any longer. It felt a little long, but thank goodness the judges were red herrings.
Post match MJF looks crushed as the Inner Circle has some bubbly. The team leaves and Cody tells MJF it’s ok….and then MJF kicks him low and gives us a great evil smirk. A fan throws a bottle at him on the way out. That was a heck of a heel turn, even it if was far from shocking.
We recap Kenny Omega vs. Jon Moxley. They’ve been trying to fight for months now but this is the rescheduled match after Moxley was hurt. Moxley has promised violence so the match is unsanctioned.
Kenny Omega vs. Jon Moxley
Anything goes. Moxley goes straight at him to start and it’s a Boss Man Slam to put Omega down early. The trashcan is brought in but they fight to the floor with Moxley being put over the barricade. Kenny hits a running dropkick over the barricade, followed by a beer to the head. The regular trashcan is poured onto Moxley and a stomp off the barricade crushes him again.
Omega’s moonsault is broken up though and it’s time to go back to ringside. That means Moxley can pull out a barbed wire baseball bat and some shots to the back have Omega pounding the mat in pain. Moxley puts the wire on Omega’s back and stomps on it as the fans are impressed. Back up and Omega blocks a shot to the face before trying a snapdragon, only to have Moxley rake it across his arm. That’s a good storytelling device as Omega is in Moxley’s world here.
Omega gets in a trashcan shot to the head and it’s table time, plus the barbed wire broom. Moxley throws the trashcan at his head to break it up though, only to have a dive cut off with a broom to the head. Back in and Omega sweeps Moxley’s back to keep the blood flowing. The bat across the face cuts Moxley open and it’s a running Fameasser onto the bat to make it worse.
The Regal Roll sets up a middle rope moonsault with the trashcan for two….and it’s time for a board of mousetraps. Yeah I’m done with this now as this is CZW level nonsense. Omega hits a jumping knee but gets clotheslined down. Moxley drops him onto the mousetraps and now, it’s time for some big gold chains. They get wrapped around Omega’s mouth before Moxley pulls out a spike.
That’s blocked with a chain to the ribs but Moxley suplexes him onto the chains. Omega hits the snapdragon suplex and a second one makes it even worse. The chain goes around Moxley’s throat to choke him over the rope but Omega’s hands slip to get Moxley to the floor. Omega hits a big flip dive through a table and takes his sweet time finding a bag of….broken glass.
A Sky High puts Moxley onto the glass for two and Omega drags him through the glass to set up a Sharpshooter. Moxley has to crawl through the glass to get to the ropes, thankfully with the referee not calling for the break and only watching as Moxley climbs the ropes for the break. Omega tries to put the glass in Moxley’s mouth but gets German suplexed into the glass.
Some V Triggers rock Moxley and they head to the ramp. Omega calls Page and the Bucks to bring something out but the say that’s too far. They reluctantly bring out….a big barbed wire spider web board. The One Winged Angel is loaded up but Moxley reverses into a suplex to send them both into the wire and get a lot of gasping.
A bunch of people come out to help them escape and Omega hits him with something made of metal. The V Trigger sends Moxley through a wall covering a spotlight and stay down for a bit. Back in and it’s a Paradigm Shift onto the glass for two so Moxley grabs a knife and cuts up the mat away from the ring.
The pad is pulled back as well and the wood is exposed. Omega backdrops him onto the wood and hits a V Trigger, setting up a Paradigm Shift to Moxley onto the wood….for two. END THIS ALREADY. Omega’s Phoenix splash hits wood and Moxley gets two more. An elevated Paradigm Shift onto the wood finally finishes Omega at 39:22.
Rating: D+. That’s the one that is going to get the most arguments and I completely understand that one. They went on WAY too long here and you could have cut at least ten to fifteen minutes out of it. Some of the near falls near the end had me sighing because it just kept going for whatever reason. The violence and hardcore elements went further than I was good with, though it didn’t get all the way to the point of no return (the mousetraps were at least kept…..yeah I’m not finishing that). I completely get why people are going to like this, but it’s a case of a match not being for me.
Overall Rating: B. That main event took a lot out of what was an otherwise rather good show. There are still some things that I would change but they’re getting to a point where they have an established style. That may or may not be to your liking, but it is a good thing for them to figure out something that works for them. I would still cut down some of the lengths, but the action itself is good enough. Stick with what works and fix what didn’t and they have something, but that main event is going to divide the audience, at least somewhat.
Proud And Powerful b. Young Bucks – Street Sweeper to Nick
Adam Page b. Pac – Deadeye
Shawn Spears b. Joey Janela – Running Death Valley Driver
So Cal Uncensored b. Lucha Bros and Private Party – SCULater to Quen
Riho b. Emi Sakura – Rollup
Chris Jericho b. Cody when MJF threw in the towel
Jon Moxley b. Kenny Omega – Elevated Paradigm Shift
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