The SmarK Rant for AEW All Out 2021 – 09.05.21
Live from Chicago, IL
Your hosts are Tony Schiavone, Excalibur, and Jim Ross.
TNT title: God’s Favorite Champion Miro v. Eddie Kingston
And OF COURSE Eddie already has a “Redeem Deez Nuts” shirt. Miro charges in and Eddie catches him in a choke attempt, so Miro fights out and hits the floor to escape. Back in, Eddie with chops in the corner and he follows with an exploder to put Miro on the floor again, but he this time he follows and gets booted in the face as a result. Kingston fires back with his own and tries a dive off the apron, but Miro catches him with a powerslam on the floor. This allows Miro to go to work on the back, slamming Eddie into the ringpost and that gets two in the ring. Miro chokes him out on the ropes after biting the hand, and that gets Eddie all fired up, so Miro drops him with a shot to the face and gets an elbow for two. Miro goes to the chinlock and Eddie fights out of that with chops, so Miro dropkicks him into the corner and follows with a corner splash. Another one misses and Kingston fights back with an enzuigiri and chases Miro to the floor, but he tries a dive and Miro cuts that off. Back in, Eddie pulls out a Saito suplex and both guys are down. Miro pulls him up and throws forearms, but Eddie shrugs him off and fights back with chops before putting Miro down with a pair of backdrop drivers for two. Miro ducks the backfist and retreats to the floor, but this time Eddie is able to hit the dive and sends Miro into the railing. Back in, Eddie keeps going with a fisherman’s suplex for two. Miro pounds the back to slow him down and hits a deadlift german suplex, but Eddie pulls off a turnbuckle pad trying to block it. Eddie fights up, so Miro puts him down with the Machka kick and goes to the GAME OVER, but Eddie gets the ropes. This only angers Miro more, but Eddie catches him with the backfist and a DDT for two in a crazy near fall. Eddie wants a piledriver, but Miro won’t go up, so Eddie tries to run him into the exposed steel and the ref stops him. So Miro goes low, and hits another head kick, another Machka Kick, and that finishes at 13:22. Hell of an opener with a badass slugfest HOSS FIGHT. ****
Jon Moxley v. Satoshi Kojima
Hot take with the Mario sign in the crowd, but I prefer the Paper Mario games on DS. Never really was a fan of Super Mario RPG but I’m not an RPG guy in general. They immediately trade chops and forearms and wind up on the floor, where Kojima hits him with a dive and continues pounding away. Back in, Moxley stomps the fingers and goes to work on the hand, then takes him to the corner and throws chops. Kojima gets his own chops and they fight for a suplex and then go to the top and exchange bites before Kojima brings him down with a superplex. They fight to the apron and Kojima gets a DDT on the apron, THE HARDEST PART OF THE RING. I feel like they’re having trouble following Miro and Kingston here with a similar style match. Maybe they should have slotted the battle royale in here or something. Back in, Moxley comes back with a drop suplex into the cross armbreaker, but Kojima makes the ropes. Moxley tries the DDT, but Kojima gets a pretty sick brainbuster for two. Moxley ducks the lariat and hits a german suplex, but Kojima fights up and they trade clotheslines, with neither going down, and Mox gets a high knee before Kojima hits the lariat. Koji Kutter and both guys are down. They slug it out and Mox gets his own lariat for two and turns that into the bulldog choke, with Kojima getting the ropes. Kojima fights back with Mongolian chops, but Moxley hits the Paradigm Shift, twice, and that finishes at 11:52. The crowd was very generous here because Kojima looked old and broken, but they fought through and had a good match by sheer force of willpower and hitting each other hard, regardless. ***1/4
And then MINORU SUZUKI comes out to kick down the Forbidden Door and throws forearms with Moxley as they beat each other up for fun. And Suzuki wins that battle, choking Moxley down and hitting the Gotch piledriver. GIVE ME MORE OF THIS.
AEW Women’s title: Dr. Britt Baker DMD v. Kris Statlander
They trade wristlocks and Britt tries to roll into the Lockjaw, but Kris escapes that. Statlander goes for her own submission and Britt makes the ropes off that. Kris tries to boop her, but Britt goes for the submission attempt, so Kris powers up and boops Britt with her own finger. Savage. They fight to the top and slug it out, and Britt brings her down with a neckbreaker and they head to the floor. Back in, Britt with a suplex and she goes to the chinlock, but Kris fights out and pounds away in the corner. Statlander gets a Michinoku driver for two, but Britt rolls her over into a backslide for two and a DDT for two. Britt loads up the SPARKLY GLOVE OF DOOM, but Statlander tries the Big Bang, so Britt cradles for two. Britt gets a sloppy flatliner into the corner as they’re really struggling here for some reason. They fight to the top and Statlander gets a superplex for two. Kris goes up again and misses the 450, allowing Britt to try the Lockjaw, but Kris rolls out and powers her up into an electric chair drop and axe kick for two. The crowd gives them a “This is awesome” chant at this point, which seems generous. They head to the floor and Statlander misses the moonsault off the apron, allowing Britt to curb stomp her. At this point, Orange Cassidy gets FIRED UP and tells her to get back in the ring, and Statlander does just that, trying for the spider crab as a result. Britt escapes from that and stomps a mudhole in the corner, setting up a Pittsburgh Sunrise as the crowd loses their minds over that one, and another curb stomp sets up the Lockjaw at 11:31. Man, when it happens for real, the AEW crowd is gonna go crazy for it. Match was just OK but the crowd was super hot for it. **1/2
Meanwhile, Andrade is without an opponent because someone cancelled Pac’s flight, but Chavo doesn’t know anything about that. So they’re having the match on Rampage instead.
AEW World tag team titles, cage match: The Young Bucks v. The Lucha Bros
Luchas get the epic live musical entrance, and they all slug it out right away, leading to the Bucks trying to run away and getting brought down. We get an amazingly timed pair of ropewalks with Fenix bringing down Nick with a rana off that, and the Luchas hit double superkicks to put them down. The Bucks get sent into the cage and the Luchas take turns slamming into them, but they go to the well once too often and run into the cage as a result. Nick gets a backstabber on Penta out of the corner and does some Macho Man cosplay to celebrate, and then Matt powerbombs Fenix into the cage while Penta gets trapped between the ring and the cage outside. Matt finds a chain and chokes out Fenix, but he tries another powerbomb and this time Fenix reverses him into the cage and allows Penta to run wild with sling blades. Penta with his own backstabber on Matt and that gets two. Fenix runs up the cage on a wristlock and hits Matt with a kick in an amazing spot, but the Luchas accidentally kick each other and the Bucks hit them with cutters, only for Fenix to pop up with a double cutter on the Bucks of his own. Penta with a package driver for two on Matt off that. Fenix goes up and the Bucks cut him off, as Matt gets a Sharpshooter on Penta and Nick hits Fenix with a german suplex on the apron. Bucks with a double team senton on Penta and that gets two. Double superkick sends Fenix into the cage, and they do a spot where Matt tombstones Penta while Nick jumps off the top with a stomp and lands on Fenix with a senton for two. BTE Trigger misses and the Bucks collide knees and then run into the cage, but Matt just kicks both Bros in the huevos and More Bang for Your Buck gets two on Fenix. Bucks do the mask ripping to be dicks and lawn dart Fenix into the cage, as Cutler throws a bag into the ring, which contains a thumbtack-laden shoe for Matt to use. Penta protects Fenix with his own face, so Matt superkicks him with the tacks as requested and they run Penta’s head into the tacks in the corner. Nick adds a running boot to the tacks as Penta is bleeding everywhere. Fenix is still alive, so they superkick him and hit a reverse rana, and the BTE Trigger on Penta…gets two. Fenix comes back and fights off the Bucks, hitting them with kicks before stealing the shoe and nailing Matt to set up a Blackfire driver for two. Fenix goes up and Nick shoves him off, so they cling to the cage and slug it out there, before landing on the apron as we get stereo piledrivers on the apron from Penta and Matt. Awesome. Matt and Penta slug it out in the ring and they fight to the top, where Penta gets a top rope Canadian Destroyer and everyone is dead. Everyone is up for a four-way Mexican chopfest standoff that turns into a superkick standoff, until only Matt is left alive, but then the Luchas pop up for a SUPERKICK ENCORE and everyone is down again. Fenix fights up with a superkick on Nick and the Luchas hit the Fear Factor for two, but Matt saves. So the Luchas decides to go bigger and Fenix climbs the cage, but Nick superkicks Penta to break that up and chases Fenix to the top. Rey then comes down with a dive onto both Bucks and the double piledriver FINALLY ends the Bucks at 22:00 as they FINALLY get their comeuppance in a show stealing classic of insanity. ***** Holy shit what a match and no one was able to save the Bucks this time. And that’s why AEW is so great at this, because they sold the match on the stipulation and gave the fans exactly what was promised.
OK, now we need a cooldown.
Casino Battle Royale:
I was gonna say Paul Wight but this will do. We start with Hikaru Shida, Skye Blue, Emi Sakura, The Bunny and Abadon. Everyone slugs it out to start and Blue gets a bit of shine on Bunny, but she stops to pose and gets thrown out by Abadon at 1:20. Bunny tosses Abadon at 1:24, and Sakura puts Shida in a Romero Special until Bunny breaks it up and beats on both women. This kind of goes nowhere and we get the next group, with Anna Jay, Kiera Hogan, Kilynn King, Diamante and Nyla Rose. So this fires things up again as everyone brawls, mostly Anna Jay going after the Bunny, and Shida puts Sakura out at 4:20. Rose dumps Hogan at 4:45, and then kicks King out at 4:59. Shida tries a rana on Nyla and gets dumped at 5:19. So Rose and Diamante double-team the Bunny as we’re already down to four people for the moment. So the next group is Thunder Rosa, Penelope Ford, Riho, Jamie Hayter and Big Swole. So this fills up the ring again as Bunny and Ford go after Anna Jay and Riho is out at 8:22 via Hayter. Swole headbutts Diamante to the floor at 8:43, but Hayter dumps Swole at 8:53. Rosa fights off Hayter and Rose and hits Nyla with a shotgun dropkick on the ropes and that’s it for that group. Next up is Tay Conti, Jade Cargill, Red Velvet, Leyla Hirsch and Rebel. Hirsch goes nuts and suplexes everyone until Jade cuts her off and everyone is fired up again. Rebel clowns on the apron and Velvet dropkicks her out at 12:22. Bunny and Jay fight on the apron and Bunny is out at 12:32, followed by Jay at 12:33 via Ford. Jade presses Hirsch over and out at 12:59 and everyone slugs it out in the corners as we get the “mystery” last person, who the crowd already knows. Ruby Soho is the Joker, complete with appropriate theme song. She goes after Jade and Thunder dives off Ruby with a rana on Nyla. Jade slams Ruby to cut her off and then tosses Hayter at 16:05. Ford and Tay trade kicks and Jade throws out Velvet at 16:22. And then Nyla turns on Jade and throws her out at 16:35. Rosa and Ruby team up on Rose while Tay throws out Ford at 17:05 and then gets thrown out at 17:10 while showboating. So we’re left with Ruby, Rosa and Rose. Nyla fights them both off and hangs Ruby in the Tree of Woe, but Rosa puts her on the apron and dropkicks her out at 18:37, leaving Ruby v. Rosa. So they slug it out and Rosa gets all fired up with chops and they trade running elbows before fighting to the apron. Ruby hangs on the ropes and they trade knees as they tease eliminations, but Ruby gets the high kick and knocks Rosa out to win at 22:03. Ended up being a pretty damn good battle royale with tons of heat and drama.
The FINAL FIGHT: Chris Jericho v. MJF
MJF WINS THE INTERNET with a Y2J spoof for his entrance to troll Chicago after Jericho debuted there in 1999. This man is an amazing asshole. And then Jericho gets his theme played by guitarist Billy Grey. MJF runs away to start as usual and then grabs a headlock, but Jericho takes him down with armdrags and a dropkick as they’re at a stalemate. Jericho takes him down for the Walls, but MJF cradles for two. Jericho heads to the floor and they fight out there and into the crowd. They head back to the ring and Jericho dropkicks him off the apron, but he tries a baseball slide and gets trapped in the apron by MJF. Back in, MJF goes to work on the arm and a suplex gets two. Jericho fights back with his own suplex and the bulldog to set up a backbreaker for two. Apologies to Kojima earlier, THIS is what old and broken looks like. MJF stomps the arm in the corner and that gets two. MJF with chops and he manages to hit the Heatseeker DDT on the apron, which JR reminds us is THE HARDEST PART OF THE RING, and both guys are down. MJF decides to follow him out of the ring and try a rana, but Jericho powerbombs him on the apron, which as we just learned is THE HARDEST PART OF THE RING. Back in, they slug it out and Jericho goes up, but MJF catches him with a codebreaker on the way down and that gets two. Jericho tries for the Walls and MJF fights out of that, so Jericho hits a Lionsault for two. Jericho with corner clotheslines and they head to the top, but Jericho tries a rana and MJF counters with a short powerbomb and that gets two. To the top again, but this time Jericho comes down with a codebreaker on MJF and that gets two. This brings out Hager and Wardlow to fight in the crowd and distract the ref, allowing MJF to use Floyd the Bat on Jericho, and MJF gets a Judas Effect for the pin at 18:34, despite Jericho’s foot being on the ropes. But another ref calls out the foot, so THIS MATCH MUST CONTINUE. Jericho immediately rolls up MJF for two, but MJF gets the armbar in the middle and Jericho cradles for two. Jericho fights out and reverses to the Walls, and cowardly MJF has to tap at 21:05, so Jericho’s CAREER MUST CONTINUE. Kind of a disappointment with a bullshit Dusty finish that I didn’t really need to see in this promotion, but MJF is good enough to draw a good match out of broken down Jericho. ***1/4
CM Punk v. Darby Allin
Darby’s wacky pre-match video sees him re-using the “Superbad” body bag, painting over it with “Best in the World” this time. I can’t imagine body bags are cheap in a post-Covid world so I can’t blame him. And yes, after 7 years it’s finally clobbering time again. Punk in long tights is a weird flex but I’ll allow it. Darby takes him down with an armdrag to start but Punk gets a shoulderblock and the crowd is hanging on everything. Punk goes to the headlock and Darby reverses to the hammerlock and hangs on through Punk’s reversals and rolls him up for one. Punk finally slams him and goes to a headlock, but Darby puts him down with a shoulderblock and then nearly jumps into a GTS before slipping out and bailing to the floor. Back in, Darby gets a ropewalk takedown and fires away with corner splashes, but Punk whips him into the corner and Darby flies into the post and hits the floor. Back in, Punk gets two off that and goes to work on the back. Backdrop suplex gets two. Punk with a surfboard and Darby fights out of that, but Punk puts him down with a knee to the gut and goes to a neck crank and abdominal stretch. Darby escapes with a stunner and a gets a pair of cradles for two, and a Code Red gets two. Darby goes up and Punk cuts him off, but he tries a superplex and Darby counters with a bodypress for two. Darby with a jackknife cradle for two and Punk bridges into the GTS, but Darby bumps to the floor off that and he’s out on the floor. So Punk decides to take the countout, but Darby beats the count. Back in, Punk beats on him with forearms and the running knee into the clothesline, which seems to set up another GTS, but Darby goes dead weight on him. Another try and Darby elbows out of it and beats Punk down like he’s in a UFC fight until Punk hits the floor and Darby follows with a dive. Darby goes for broke with a swanton off the top to the floor, and back in for the Coffin Drop, but Punk sits up to avoid it and chuckles about it. Darby cradles him for two, but Punk reverses to the GTS, and Darby reverses THAT to the Last Supper for two. Punk hits the heel kick and misses a charge, so Darby tries the victory roll, and the GTS finishes him at 16:42. They started slow and easy for Punk and did a great job building it from there. ***1/2 And then Punk offers him the handshake of respect, winning the match and putting over the kid at the same time.
Paul Wight v. QT Marshall
Wight cleans house on QT’s stooges to start and chops QT in the corner before standing on him, but QT dropkicks the hip to take over. That gets two, but Wight throws him out, so QT comes in and tries the Cutter, which Wight shrugs off and then beats up the geeks some more. And then it’s JESUS H CHOKESLAM for QT to finish at 3:11. Just a cooldown match before the main event, which is not usually the kind of thing they do in AEW, but whatever. ½*
Meanwhile, Jon Moxley does a promo on Suzuki in advance of their match this Wednesday on Dynamite. Um, yes please.
AEW World title: Kenny Omega v. Christian Cage
Well I guess we’ve run out of time for Hangman Page to get the title shot tonight. Omega tries a V-Trigger and misses, and Cage goes for the Killswitch but Omega escapes that. They slug it out and Kenny gets a rana to put him on the floor, but misses a baseball slide and Cage runs him into the railing. Christian follows with a bodypress from the top, but Kenny runs him into the stairs. Kenny puts a table on him and shatters it with a double stomp while Callis takes the ref, but he sets up another table and Christian blocks a suplex to escape that one. Into the ring, Cage throws chops and goes for a cloverleaf, but Omega rakes the eyes and gets a sling blade for two. Kenny chokes away in the corner and follows with a backdrop suplex for two, but Christian fights up and goes to the top, before Kenny sends him to the floor. Kenny tries a moonsault off the railing and botches it, slipping and landing on his feet, before smugly popping up and hitting it on a second try. Back in, that gets two. That could have gone REALLY badly for him. Back in, they slug it out and Omega runs him into the corner and follows with the ushigoroshi for two. Omega goes and Christian cuts him off and brings him down with a rana and they’re both down. They slug it out and Cage beats on him in the corner, almost getting caught in the One Winged Angel before recovering and choking Omega on the ropes. Christian tries another cloverleaf, but Omega sends him into the corner to break, and then ironically Christian escapes You Can’t Escape with a DDT for two. Omega blocks a spear with a knee strike and goes to work on Christian in the corner, but Christian comes back with a tornado DDT for two. Omega escapes with the Killswitch with a leg lariat to the back and follows with a V-Trigger in the corner and snapdragon. Another one follows, but Christian flips him off in response to the bang, so Omega hits a third snapdragon and follows with a V-Trigger to put Christian on the apron. So with the table still in play, Kenny tries a german suplex off the apron and Excalibur actually calls it “Chekhov’s Table” before I can make the joke. So they fight over the table and tease their finishers on the apron, but Cage snaps Kenny’s neck and then spears Kenny through the table to win that battle. Back in, Cage spears him twice and that gets two. Christian goes up with a frog splash, but Kenny gets the knees up, only to have his powerbomb attempt foiled by a bad back. So he throws more knees instead, but Cage blocks him and slugs back until Kenny hits a V-Trigger to put him down. Christian escapes the Tiger Driver and rolls into the cloverleaf, finally getting it, so Callis calls down the yayhoos to help. Omega hits Gallows by mistake and Christian hits the Killswitch, but it only gets two. So now Callis comes into the ring and gets chased off, as Christian tries a top rope Killswitch, but Kenny reverses to a top rope One Winged Angel, and good night at 21:19. This was great, but not the all time classic they were trying for. **** Still though, hell of a main event.
This brings out the Elite to celebrate and the beatdown on Cage commences, and the Jurassic Express tries to save and gets beaten down as well. And Kenny declares that no one is on his level and anyone who can beat him is already dead. And then the lights go out and it’s ADAM COLE BAY BAY. But he turns on the Jurassics and he’s also Elite, bay bay. But before Omega can kiss off the show, it’s BRYAN DANIELSON and shit is going down as the babyfaces all destroy Nick Jackson and Kenny runs away.
What a show! Probably one of the best AEW PPVs overall with an incredible finish and a Match of the Year contender. How can you not love wrestling after watching this one?