RADICAN’S AEW “DOUBLE OR NOTHING” REPORT
MAY 25, 2019
LAS VEGAS, NEV.
MGM GRAND GARDEN ARENA
AIRED LIVE ON PPV AND B/R LIVE
BUY IN PRE-SHOW REPORT
Note: If you’re having problems with the pre-show on YouTube, it’s working fine on Fite.tv.
Commentators: Alex Marvez and Excalibur.
The announcers talked about how to watch the Double or Nothing PPV. They mentioned SCU vs. OWE would kick off Double or Nothing on PPV. Wrestlers will enter every three minutes by suite. The final entrant is lucky number 21.
The Casino Battle Royale is up first. Justin Roberts explained the rules The Clubs kicked it off with Dustin Thomas, Sunny Daze, Brandon Cutler, Michael Nakazawa, and MJF.
(a) CASINO BATTLE ROYALE – winner receives a shot at the AEW World Championship
The match is contested Nakazawa oiled himself up to escape the grasp of several wrestlers. The diamonds were out next. That group included Isiah Kassidy, Jimmy Havoc, Joey Janela with Penelope Ford, Shawn Spears, and Brian Pillman Jr. Pillman took out Cassidy on the ramp. Havoc then took out Pillman. The fans fired up big time for spears entering the ring. The heart suite was out next. Billy Gunn, Glacier, Marq Quen, Ace Romero, and Jungle Boy came down to the ring.
Glacier and MJF faced off. MJF mocked glaciar with a Karate Kid pose. Glacier wiped him out and hit a big chop. Daze eliminated Nakazawa.
-MICHAEL NAKAZAWA ELIMINATED-
Glacier eliminated Daze and MJF eliminated Glacier.
-SUNNY DAZE ELIMINATED-
The spades were out next. Luchasaurus, Marko Stunt, Sunny Kiss, Tommy Dreamer, and Orange Cassidy came down to the ring. The fans fired up for Dreamer getting a trashcan and tossing it into the ring. Dreamer went to town on everyone with a trash can lid. Luchasaurus hit a double chokeslam on Private Party. The last entrant is Hangman Page. The fans fired up as Page limped down to the ring. He had the joker card. Page ran wild inside the ring wiping out a ton of men. Janela and Page began exchanging blows in the middle of the ring. Page hit the Deadeye on Janela. Page tried to lift Ace Romero, but hurt his leg in the process.
-PRIVATE PARTY ELIMINATED-
Ace Romero pounced Stunt over the top and to the floor. He sent them into Private Party.
-MARKO STUNT ELIMINATED-
Jungle Boy tossed Romero to the floor.
-ACE ROMERO ELIMINATED-
Thomas hit a 619 on Janela and followed up with a 450 and the fans fired up, but MJF ran up and nailed him with a kick. Thomas used a guillotine up top to drag Shawn Spears to the floor.
-SHAWN SPEARS ELIMINATED-
Thomas went for a slingshot, but MJF sent him to the floor. Cutler then eliminated Gunn. MJF then eliminated Cutler. Luchasaurus eliminated Janela with a chokeslam through a table at ringside.
-DUSTIN THOMAS ELIMINATED-
-BRANDON CUTLER ELIMINATED-
-JOEY JANELA ELIMINATED-
-SONNY KISS ELIMINATED-
Dreamer sent Kiss to the floor. Cassidy casually entered the ring and hti some light kicks on Dreamer. Cassidy took a right hand with his hands in his pockets and nipped up. Dreamer then tossed him out to the floor.
-ORANGE CASSIDY ELIMINATED-
Havoc stapled Dreamer and then eliminated him.
-JIMMY HAVOC ELIMINATED-
MJF tossed Jungle Boy over the top. He hung on, but Havoc bit his fingers and he fell to teh floor.
-JUNGLE BOY ELIMINATED-
It’s down to the final four of MJF, Page, Luchasaurus, and Havoc. MJF rolled under the top rope to the floor. Havoc went to the apron and Luchasaurus booted him to the floor to eliminate him.
-JIMMY HAVOC ELIMINATED-
It’s down to the final three. Luchasaurus hit a big kneeling flapjack on Page. He charged at Page and he pulled the ropes low to eliminated him.
Everyone thought Page had one. MJF ran into the ring and threw him over the top, but he hung on. Page then hit the Bukshot Lariat on MJF and tossed him to the floor.
WINNER: Hangman Page in 24:00 to receive a shot at the AEW World Championship (½*)
(Radican’s Analysis: The match itself and the announcing weren’t exciting at all outside of a couple of spots. The finish was poorly executed, as MJF hadn’t been hiding nearly long enough to be a surprise to come back into the ring when Page thought he had won.)
Alicia Atout was backstage. She introduced Kylie Rae, who was way too excited for her match tonight. Peter Avalon came into the picture and told her to be quiet. He said he was The Librarian. Leva Bates then said she was The Librarian. They both told each other to be quiet going back and forth making a shushing sound. Kylie Rae smiled in the background.
(Radican’s Analysis: Wow. That was terrible and annoying.)
They went to a video package for Cody Rhodes vs. Dustin Rhodes.
Sammy Guevara was out next to face Kip Sabian. He’s wearing a giant Panda head to the ring. Kip Sabian was out next.
(b) SAMMY GUEVARA vs. KIP SABIAN
They went to a fast exchange and Sabian hit a springboard hurricanrana. Guevara flipped over Sabian and nailed him with a dropkick. The fans booed as Guevara strutted around the ring. Sabian faked a dropkick to the apron and booted Sabian t the floor. He faked a dive and Guevara turned around. He then hit a springboard cannonball off the middle rope to wipe out Guevara. Guevara fired back with a dive of his own that the cameras missed. Back inside the ring, Guevara hit some kicks on Sabian, but Sabian caught one and hit a dragon screw. He then caught a kick and applied a leg submission, but Guevara got to the ropes. Guevara missed several flips on the mat with Sabian rolling out of the way until he hit a standing SSP for a two count. Sabian hit a springboard dropkick on Guevara. Sabian went on the attack inside the ring and hit a big running kick for a two count. Both men went over the top on a suplex attempt. Guevara held on when they hit the floor and hit a suplex of his own. The fans chanted AEW. It’s like the crowd is just dying to pop for something and they haven’t been able to yet.
Sabian ended up on the barricade and Guevara hit a SSP off the apron to the guardrail. That was nuts. Guevara went up top and went for a 640, but Sabian got his knees up. He then hit Deathly Hollows for the win.
WINNER: Kip Sabian in 9:00. (**½)
(Radican’s Analysis: This took a little while to get going, but they closed the match with some strong action.)
They went to a video for Sadie Gibbs, who is the newest entrant in the womens’ division.
Jim Ross was shown making his way backstage and into the arena.
A car pulled up and Cody Rhodes and Brandi Rhodes got out with their dog Pharoah. Rhodes drank some coffee and kissed Brandi.
Kenny Omega was shown at a computer. He looked up and did a thumbs up. Matt Jackson ran into Michael Nakazawa in the hallway. Matt repeated his name after he told him what his name was. Matt ran into Nick Jackson backstage. Someone told them they needed credentials and got superkicked. Nick asked if they were ready for the PPV and they said let’s do it. The Being the Elite intro video began playing. Cody Rhodes, Brandi Rhodes, Matt and Nick Jackson, and Kenny Omega came out and the fans applauded. The fans started a big AEW chant. Noel Foley was shown chanting along with fans in the crowd.
Cody got on the mic and said welcome. Matt said he should do it. Nick then grabbed the mic and said he wanted to do it. Kenny then grabbed the mic and said he wanted to do it. He then said he was going to do the honors. Omega welcomed the fans to the first show of All Elite Wrestling. A big AEW chant rang out in the crowd. Omega says he feels like they can’t do any wrong. Matt said it was so cool to see 20,000 people. Cody said it’s not 20,000, it’s more like 13,000. Matt said this is pro wrestling, you round out. Cody then said they just set the attendance record for MGM Grand with 20,000 fans. Brandi got on the mic and said this is the first sensory inclusive event in wrestling history. Cody said they’re about to make history because this is a revolution. He then got cut off because the pre-show window ended and the main show was about to start.
DOUBLE OR NOTHING
Announcers: Jim Ross, Alex Marvez, and Excalibur
Justin Roberts introduced the singing of The National Anthem by the Jackson family. Christopher Jackson from Hamilton sang with his wife and son.
The opening video package aired. Jim Ross then introduced the show. He was flanked by Alex Marvez and Excalibur. They previewed SCU vs. Strong Hearts. The announcers then ran down the rest of the card leading into the Kenny Omega vs. Chris Jericho main event.
S.C.U. was out first. Excalibur was going to explain the rules for tag matches, but Daniels had a mic, so I guess we’re not going to get the rules. He did quickly mention a 10 count for wrestlers on the floor.
Daniels gave the mic to Scorpio Sky. He said this is the worst town he’s ever been in. Daniels then said Vegas is a bad bad town. He said they might be their favorite worst town. Daniels then sang they’re going to have themselves a real good time. Daniels said the all elite era starts tonight and who better to kick it off than the official ambassadors of California. Kazarian then lead the fans in a S.C.U. chant.
Strong Hearts were out next. Excalibur then explained there’s a 10 count in tag matches, but it’s up to the referees discretion. Marvez then talked about OEW where the Strong Hearts are coming from.
(1) S.C.U. (CHRISTOPHER DANIELS & SCORPIO SKY & FRANKIE KAZARIAN) vs. STRONG HEARTS (CIMA & T-HAWK & EL LINDAMAN)
Daniels and CIMA kicked things off. They had a fast exchange off the ropes. They came to a stalemate with both men going for an arm drag at the same time. The fans applauded and Hawk and Kazarian tagged into the match. Kazarian hit a flurry of strikes on Hawk capped by a clothesline. Hawk fired back with a big chop. Hawk then took Kazarian down with a shoulder tackle. Sky made a blind tag and wiped out Hawk with a surprise dropkick. The action broke down and CIMA cleared the apron. Lindaman tagged in and went to work on Sky. Sky cut off LIndman and he took a flurry of moves from S.C.U. They hit a flurry of moves on Lindaman in the corner capped by a big dropkick from Sky and Kazarian made the cover for a 2 count. The announcers said S.C.U. were still learning how to work with each other and hadn’t been tagging all that long. Really? Someone corrected Marvez. The action broke down and Strong Hearts ran wild. CIMA hit a big running double knee strike on Daniels in the corner and the fans fired up. CIMA went to work on Daniels. Lindaman and CIMA nailed him with a double dropkick. Hawk got a chinlock submission, but S.C.U. made the save.
Daniels cut off Hawk. Sky eventually got the hot tag and ran wild on Lindaman. The action broke down again and Sky took a flurry of moves capped by a German from Lindaman, but Sky kicked out. Sky rolled through a sunset flip attempt and hit a dropkick on Lindaman. Kazarian got the tag and ran wild. The action broke down again and Daniels hit a big dive to the floor. Sky hit a slingshot cutter on Hawk. Lindaman tripped him and hit a low dropkick. The action continued at a rapid pace. Hawk and Daniels hit clotheslines at the same time and both men were down. The fans fired up. Daniels hit Angel’s Wings on Hawk, but Lindaman hit him with a German and CIMA came off the tip with a meteora. Kazarian came out of nowhere to break up the pin. This is nuts. Sky hit an insane flip dive to the floor. S,C.U. hit the Best Meltzer Ever on Lindaman for the win.
WINNERS: Christopher Daniels & Scorpio Sky & Frankie Kazarian in 14:00. (***¾)
(Radican’s Analysis: This was awesome with some incredible action. If you blinked, you missed something.)
Allie joined the commentary booth for the women’s triple threat.
Kylie Rae came out first. She had some light pyro. Nyla Rose came out with a towel over her head and a half skull. Dr. Britt Baker was out last. There was a loud ringing sound. Brandi Rhodes came out with a mic. Her jacket said Chief Brandi. Brandi said don’t look confused and act like I lied to you. She said when she told them they could win the match, she meant it. She said she also meant it when she said it would be a great match. Brandi said she didn’t want a great match, she wants a match that is awesome.
Music played and Awesome Kong came out to a huge pop. WOW!
(2) KYLIE RAE vs. NYLA ROSE vs. DR. BRITT BAKER vs. AWESOME KONG – FATAL FOUR WAY MATCH
The bell rung and Nyla Rose and Kong went face to face. Rae and Baker tried to attack them, but they shrugged them off. Kong hit a backfist and sent rose to the floor with a kick. Kong shook off Rae. She then slammed Long onto Rae. Baker pulled the ropes and Kong went over the top to the floor. Rae then rolled her up from behind for a two count. Baker ducked a kick and rolled up Rae for a two count after an awkward exchange. Kong caught Baker going for a dive, but Rae wiped them both out with a dive. Rose hit a big spinebuster on Rae inside the ring a short time later. Alex Marvez plugged Fight For the Fallen on July 13. Rose hit a Samoan Drop on Baker. Rae reversed a powerbomb into a sunset slip and Baker broke up the pin at the last second. Brandi was shown watching the match at ringside. Rose went up top, but Baker cut her off. Rae joined her going after Rose up top, but Kong ran in and powered everyone down to the mat. WOW! Kong hit a flurry of strikes on Baker. They brawled on the apron a short time later. Baker nailed Kong with a kick and then Kong took another kick from Rae from inside the ring. Kong went to the floor and Rose speared her into the ring steps. Baker hit a swinging neck breaker on Rae inside the ring a short time later for a near fall. Rae rolled through on Baker and hit Chaos Theory with a bridge for a near fall. Rae fired up, but Baker nailed her with a superkick. Baker then hit the Ushigoroshi on Rae for the win.
WINNER: Britt Baker in 12:00. (***1/4)
(Radican’s Analysis: This got off to a great start and was building up really nicely, but the finish was pretty flat. I thought for sure Kong would be going over here.)
Kenny Omega was shown getting ready backstage earlier in the day. They also showed Chris Jericho getting ready backstage.
Best Friends vs. Angelico & Jack Evans is up next. Evans walked down to the ring using his hands. The cameras missed Angelico and Evans flipping off the top and into the ring. Evans did some breakdancing.
(3) BEST FRIENDS (CHUCK TAYLOR & TRENT) vs. ANGELICO & JACK EVANS
Marvez said teams had a count of 10 to get in and out of the ring. Best Friends went to hug each other early in the match, but Angelico and Evans nailed them with a pair of dropkicks. Angelico and Evans ran wild with a flurry of maneuvers that wiped out Trent inside the ring. Evans then knocked Taylor off the apron and the fans fired up. Angelico flipped Evans into a 450 on Trent for a two count. The announcers mentioned Angelico and Evans are former AAA Tag Team Champions that went their separate ways, but are now back together. Angelico got an arm/leg combination submission on Trent, but Taylor broke it up. Trent got his feet up on Angelico’s charge into the corner. Evans ran into the ring and wiped out Trent with a kick before he could tag in Taylor. Trent finally mounted a comeback and tagged in Taylor. Taylor ended up suplexing Evans into Angelico in the corner. He then hit the falcon arrow on Evans for a two count. The action broke down and Trent came off the top and hit a DDT on Evans. Taylor then got into the ring and hit a running kick for a two count.
Trent hit a running kick on Evans. Taylor and Trent hit a Sole Food/Half and Half suplex combination. Angelico rolled to the floor and Best Friends finally hugged for a pop. Taylor tossed Evans to Trent for a cutter, but he kicked out at the last second. Angelico and Evans mounted a comeback. Angelico launched Evans into a splash on Trent for a two count. Evans came off the top, but jumped off Trent’s back as Angelico held them and wiped out Taylor with a dive. Trent ran into a knee in the corner from Angelico a short time later. Angelico lifted up Trent and hit a crucifix bomb into the corner. Evans went up top and hit a 630 splash on Trent, but Taylor broke up the pin. THe fans fired up big time. Trent got a rollup on Evans for a near fall. Angelico sent Trent into the turnbuckles hard. Angelico missed a splash to the floor on Taylor. He got Evans up on his shoulder and Trent came off the time with a big doomesday knee strike. Taylor wiped out Angelico with a dive to the floor. Taylor and Trent then hit a stuffed Strong Zero on Evans for the win.
WINNERS: Chuck Taylor & Trent in 12:00. (***½)
(Radican’s Analysis: This was a good match, but Alex Marvez is not good at commentary and sounds like he’s forcing it when he interjects during the match. They had some spectacular high-flying exchanges during the match.)
After the match, Best Friends wanted a hug. The fans wanted them to hug too. Both teams went to hug and the lights went out. The lights came on and The Super Smash Brothers were in the ring (Stu Grayson & Evil Uno). The lights went out again. Thee lights came on again and the minions of the SSB beat up Best Friends. SSB worked over Angelico and Evans inside the ring. Alex Marvez said he doesn’t know who the men in the ring are. I guess he doesn’t watch Being the Elite. They wiped out Trent with a big tandem maneuver. Their minions then made a human throne that Evil Uno sat on.
A video aired announcing that All Out would take place in Chicago on Aug. 31 at The Sears Center. Alex Marvez said the tickets go on sale on June 12 and he was quickly corrected that they go on sale on June 14.
(4) AJA KONG & YUKA SAKAZAKI & EMI SAKURA vs. HIKARU SHIDA & RIHO ABE & RYO MIZUNAMI
Sakazaki and Shida kicked things off. Kong and Mizunami then tagged in. They’re the two powerhouses in the match. Mizunami ended a big exchange with a running shoulder tackle. Kong fired back and took out Mizunami. Sakura and Abe went at it. Sakura wiped out Abe. Kong tagged in and continued to work over Abe. She nailed her with a kick that landed with a thud. Kong hit a one arm slam on Abe. She then hit a standing diving elbow drop for a two count. Kong then hit a big piledriver on Abe, but the pin got broken up by Mizunami. Abe fired back and hit a double stomp to Sakazaki’s midsection. Abe hit a big lariat. Riho and Kong tagged in. Riho wiped out Kong with a headscissors. She then hit the 702 (619) on Kong. She came off the top, but ran right into a kick from Kong. Kong then folded her up with a sick backdrop driver for a nearfall. Kong went up top, but missed an elbow. Shida got the tag and the announcers mentioned she was the fresh one in the match. She took a kick from Sakura from the apron. The ref was distracted and Kong and Shida went after each other with a brick and a kendo stick. Kong blocked a kick attempt with her brick and nailed her in the knee with it when she went for a running knee strike. The fans fired up big time.
Shida and Sakura exchanged some big blows. Shida caught Sakura coming off the ropes with a big running knee strike. Shida brought Sakura back into the ring with a big leg drop, but Sakazaki broke up the pin. Kong hit a brainbuster on Shida.Sakura went up top and hit a diving bodypress for a two count, but the bell rang. The ref signaled for a two count. Music played and the fans chanted you f—ed up. The action continued at a rapid pace. Shida hit a running knee on Sakura for the win.
WINNER: Riho Abe & Ryo Mizunami & Hikaru Shida in 13:00. (***)
(Radican’s Analysis: The match was good, but the finish being botched with the bell ringing and music playing on a clear two count took the match down a notch.)
They went to the announcers. Marvez said he hoped the lapsed fans would come back. They said Cody vs. Dustin is next.
They went to a video package for Cody Rhodes vs. Dustin Rhodes.
A throne was shown with a symbol that looks like Triple H’s cross. Cody Rhodes then came out with Brandi Rhodes. Cody teased sitting on the throne, but then backed off. Brandi went under the ring and gave Cody a sledgehammer. Cody went up the ramp toward the Triple H throne with the sledgehammer and hit it. Smoke came out and Cody posed to a huge pop. Cody’s music played again as Brandi smiled after telling Cody to bring it down. Cody’s music stopped and the fans chanted his name.
Out next was Dustin Rhodes. He came out dressed in black and red with half his face painted. Ross said, “That’s a mighty long walk for a 50 year old man.” His music sounds like Brain Strew by Green Day. The fans chanted Dusty before the opening bell rang.
(5) CODY RHODES (w/BRANDI RHODES) vs. DUSTIN RHODES
The fans chanted this is awesome before they even locked up. Cody tripped Dustin and did a cartwheel before hitting the Stardust pose. Cody hit a dive to the floor. He teased going into the crowd and whipped Dustin into the apron. He tried it again, but this time Dustin swung around and nailed him with a kick. Dustin then hit a flipping senton off the apron and the fans fried up. The fans chanted you still got it at Dustin as he hit punches from the mount on Cody in the corner. Cody rolled out of the ring before Dustin could hit another punch. He went out into the crowd before coming back to ringside. Cody drank some water and headed back around the ring. Cody distracted the ref and Brandi hit Dustin with some water> Cody then hit a back breaker for a two count. Dustin fired back with a hard castle as the fans continued to chant. Dustin is in great shape. Dustin set up Cody with his legs spread around the ropes in the corner for Shattered Dreams. Cody took off the middie turnbuckle pad. Dustin through the pad into the crowd and charged at Cody, who tripped him into the exposed turnbuckle.
Brandi hit a spear at ringside on Dustin and Earl Hebner kicked out out much to Cody’s dismay. DDP came out and carried Brandi to the back. Dustin came up bleeding from being sent into the turnbuckle. He hit a gusher as the entire half of his face that isn’t painted is now red. Cody went after Dustin’s cut back inside the ring. Dustin swung wildly at Cody, but missed. Marvez said he couldn’t see because of all the blood in his face. Cody had blood all over his chest. The fans fired up as Dustin tried to regroup. Dustin missed another punch and Cody hit a curb stomp for a near fall. Cody went up top, but Dustin slid under him and hit his signature powerslam for a good near fall that the fans ate up. Cody tripped Dustin and grabbed a figure 4. Dustin tried to turn it over and the fans fired up. Dustin finally turned it over, but Dusty rolled into the ropes. Cody got his belt out, but Dustin got it from him, pulled down his pants, and nailed him across the backside with it. Dustin hit a destroyer out of nowhere for a near fall and the fans went nuts. Dustin hit a big superplex and Cross-Rhodes for a near fall. WOW!
Cody fought out of Cross-Rhodes, hit a low blow with the ref distracted, and hit a disaster kick for a near fall. They showed a great shot of a fan selling disbelief. Ross went nuts on commentary. They got to their feet and Dustin hit a headbutt. He then hit Cross-Rhodes for the second time for a near fall. WOW! The fans counted along like they believed this was the finish. The commentary team has really come around for this match. Dustin picked up Cody and hit a punch. They began trading punches. Cody dropped down and hit Goldust’s signature post, so Dustin returned the favor. Cody hit a bicycle kick. He bounced off the ropes and Dustin charged toward him and both men collided in mid-air. Dustin rolled over and made the cover for a near fall. It looked like Dustin was able to counter a neck breaker on that exchange. The fans chanted fight forever. Dustin slapped Cody, but Cody lifted him and hit Din’s Fire (Cop Killa). Cody broke the ref’s standing 10 count. He hit Cross-Rhodes and made the cover on Dustin for the win. What a match!
WINNER: Cody Rhodes in 23:00 (*****)
(Radican’s Analysis: The announcers came alive for this match and the fans provided an incredible atmosphere for this classic match. Dustin hit a gusher early and that really fired up the fans as he mounted comeback after comeback leading into the finish. The spot where he rolled Cody over while in the figure 4 could turn out to be an iconic shot for AEW. I have a ton of respect for Dustin putting on a performance on that level.)
Cody came back into the ring after leaving the ring. The fans chanted thank you Dustin. Cody asked the fans to hold. Cody said you don’t get to retire here. Cody asked Dustin a favor. He said in front of god and the whole world. Cody said before AEW was a thing and we filled this place up. It was him, Matt, Nick, Kenny, and Tony. Cody said he put his match down for their show next month for himself and a partner of his choosing. He said they would match up against The young Bucks, who he called the best tag team in the world. Cody said he doesn’t need a partner or a friend. Cody got emotional and so did Dustin. He said he needs his older brother. Both men hugged and the fans popped huge and chanted for Cody. Cody and Dustin left arm and arm up the aisle. What a scene!
They went to highlights of The Casino Battle Royale.
Bret Hart came out next to reveal the AEW World Championship. The fans chanted holy s—t. Hart said he was thankful to be in Las Vegas. He said he defended the world title there 26 years ago. He said it’s an honor for him to be here for another sold out world championship wrestling match. He thanked AEW for being the first presented of the AEW World Championship. Hart brought out Page, who is going to face the winner of Omega vs. Jericho for the belt a few months from now. Hart tripped up and said Page would have his match next month, but it won’t be for a few months, which likely means All Out. Page came down and shook hands with Page. MJF’s music played and he made his way down to the ring.
The fans chanted assh–e at MJF. He told them they should shut up since they paid to see him. He yelled a fan was running into the ring at Bret, who had a smirk on his face. MJF was making a joke over Hart being legitimately attacked at the WWE HOF last month. MJF pointed at Page and said, “God knows a horse can’t be the face of this company.” MJF asked if Page knows what happens when a horse has a bum leg. He said they’re about as useless as the trash fans, so you take them to the back and blow their stupid little brains out. MJF told Page to do the right thing and save himself the agony of him beating him to a pulp. MJF said he should relinquish his title shot and give it to a real man. He called Bret an old man and told him to look at him. He did Bret’s catch phrase and stopped himself and said that catchphrase sucks. MJF then did his I’m better than you catchphrase and Page went after him. MJF jumped down to the floor. Jungle Boy came down and MJF said he looks like a prepubescent teenager. He went by Jungle Boy and Jimmy Havoc made his way out to the stage. “He looks like a walking hardcore deathmatch,” said Ross. Page got in MJF’s face. He was surrounded. MJF tried to fight his way out, but he was quickly overwhelmed. Page tossed him into the crowd. Jungle Boy and Havoc then went after him in the crowd.
Bret Hart held up the AEW World Championship, which looks a little bit of a mix between the big gold belt and the old WWE Championship. It’s really nice with AEW in the middle of the center plate.
A video package for The Young Bucks vs. Lucha Bros match aired.
They showed a very slick tale of the tape quickly. The Lucha Brothers were out first wearing matching skull masks. They took them off once they got into the ring. The fans chanted Cero Miedo. The Young Bucks came out next dressed like Elvis with tassels. Money shot out into the crowd with cannons according to the announcers.
Justin Roberts announced a 60 minute time limit for the match. I’ve confirmed with Rich Fann on site that they shot out Bucks bucks and not real money. The Young Bucks got into the faces of The Lucha Bros when they were introduced. Marvez said the Bucks had gone into the Lucha Bros house and taken their property when they won the tag titles in AAA.
(6) AAA TAG TEAM CHAMPIONS THE YOUNG BUCKS (MATT & NICK JACKSON) vs. THE LUCHA BROS. (PENTAGON JR. & REY FENIX)
Pentagon and Matt kicked things off and the fans were red hot. Pentagon took of his gloves and went to do the cero miedo hand signal, but Matt cut him off twice. They had a quick exchange and Pentagon hit the cero miedo hand gesture. Fenix sent the Bucks to the floor with a double arm drag and teased a dive, but ended up springing off the ropes back into the ring. Nick and Fenix had a crazy exchange that ended with both men going for a dropkick at the same time on the floor. Both men shoved each other on the floor. Fenix said let’s do this and they ran back into the ring. The Lucha Bros. took care of Nick and eventually wiped out Matt with a double kick to the head. WOW! Marvez said, ‘This is like when the home team falls behind 28-0 in the first quarter.” Tickets for Fyter Fest go on sale this Wednesday (May 29) at noon eastern. Nick finally fired back and took out Pentagon. Matt got the tag and ran wild. Matt hit a powerslam on Fenix and then a spear on Pentagon and the fans fired up huge. Nick missed a double stomp to Pentagon’s arm and he dragged Matt in the way and he ended up hitting a double stomp to Matt’s back. Nick checked on Matt before tagging him back into the match after he wiped out Pentagon.
Pentagon mounted a comeback and monkey flipped NIck into Matt. Fenix went up top while holding Nick’s hand and wiped out Matt with a takedown off the top. A short time later Pentagon began going after Matt’s leg. Matt fired back and hit a backwards flipping stunner off the top on Pentagon. The fans fired up and Fenix got the tag. He hit a crazy kick on Nick on apron, but Matt hit three suplexes and grabbed a sharpshooter. Pentagon ran in only to take a suplex from Matt. WOW! NIck got the tag and ran wild. He hit a face buster on Fenix and then his signature inside out moonsault off the apron to the floor to wipe out Pentagon on the floor. He stared into the camera confidently after hitting that fantastic sequence. The Young Bucks hit stereo sunset flips and then applied stereo sharpshooters. Fenix and got to the ropes and so did Pentagon. Matt held up Fenix over the ropes and Matt hit a 450, but Pentagon made the save. Matt tossed Pentagon to the floor and Matt got the tag and went back to work on Fenix. Ross said this was like a restart. The Young Bucks hit a powerbomb/sliced bread combination on Fenix shouting out to their feud with the MCMG for a near fall. WOW! Pentagon ran into the ring and hit some big chops on Matt and Nick. Everyone began exchanging superkicks. Matt and Fenix ended the exchange with a double clothesline and everyone was down. WOW! The fans chanted AEW. Matt and Pentagon went at it on the apron trading blows. Both men hit pump kicks at the same time. They went to a crazy sequence on the apron. Pentagon hit a destroyer on Matt on the apron and Fenix hit one on Nick back inside the ring for a near fall. WOW!
Fenix ran at Pentagon, who lifted him up and he hit a splash to the floor to wipe out Matt and Nick. Pentagon held up Matt and Nick and drove them into the mat at the same time. Fenix then came off the top with a dive onto Nick for a near fall. Fenix went for a dive off the top, but ate a double superkick. Matt hit a running Yakuza kick on Fenix in the corner. Shout out to Generico. He then hit the super brainbuster on Fenix. WOW! Young Bucks hit More Bang For Your Buck on Pentagon, but he kicked out at the last second. Matt and Nick hit a package piledriver on Fenix and Nick ran across the ring and hit a crazy dive to wipe out Fenix, but Pentagon kicked out. Are you kidding me. The Meltzer Driver got broken up on Pentagon and he snapped Matt’s arm back with his signature arm breaker. Fenix got the tag and nailed Matt with a pair of superkicks to the shoulder. He then twisted Matt’s arm around and hit another superkick to the arm. Fenix charged at Matt, but Matt caught Fenix with one arm. Nick set up for Meltzer Driver and it was good for the win. WOW!
WINNERS: Matt & Nick Jackson in 25:00. (*****)
(Radican’s Analysis: This is what great tag team action is all about. These two teams tore the house down and The Young Bucks shouting out their rivals of the past by doing MCMG and Steen & Generico spots was incredible. Both teams brought out the best in each other with some crazy and innovative moves during the match. I was blown away.)
The announcers narrated highlights of the incredible action.
The announcers discussed the history of big main events in the building before kicking to a video package for the Kenny Omega vs. Chris Jericho main event.
Different variations of Jericho’s gimmicks like Lionheart and The List were presented. Someone came out in Jericho’s light up jacket and posed before the music stopped. Jericho then came out singing his own entrance music with a toned down look compared to the gimmick he’s been doing in NJPW. Jericho had his spiked jacket, but no makeup.
There are cracker barrels from Cracker Barrel in the ring.
Kenny Omega’s video started. Omega came out and pyro shot off. OMega was wearing a ring jacket with one wing over his shoulder. The ref struggled to get the cracker barrel out of the ring, so Jericho grabbed it and shoved it through the ropes.
(7) KENNY OMEGA vs. CHRIS JERICHO – WINNER FACES HANGMAN PAGE TO CROWN THE FIRST AEW WORLD CHAMPION
Jericho hit a shoulder tackle early and the fans applauded. The announcer mentioned this match isn’t under No DQ rules like their first match. Omega missed a V-Trigger in the corner and Jericho hit a chop a short time later. Jericho blocked a hurricanrana and went for the Walls of Jericho, but Omega dragged himself to the floor. Jericho hit a low dropkick under the bottom rope. Jericho rang the ring bell and declared himself the winner on the floor. Both men traded hard chops on the floor. Jericho dumped Omega over the timekeeper’s podium. Omega went for a springboard off the guardrail, but Jericho shoved him into the crowd. Jericho grabbed the camera and Omega spit water on him, which was captured by the camera Jericho was holding. Omega then hit a dropkick. Ross said there are countouts, but it’s up to the refs discretion. Omega got driven into the turnbuckle and began selling his right eye. Both men began trading chops in the middle of the ring. Omega came off the ropes, but Jericho caught him with a clothesline. They went to another strike exchange. Omega’s nose was bleeding. He caught Omega with a rana. Omega clotheslined Jericho over the top to the floor. Jericho got a table and Omega kicked him through the ropes. Jericho stood while holding the table and Omega came over the top with a flip dive. That looked rough. It looked like Jericho hit his arm hard on the ramp. Omega was up first and he slammed the table over Omega. Omega hit a springboard double stomp through the back of the table onto Jericho on the ramp.
They went at it back inside the ring. Omega went for a snap dragon. Jericho blocked it and hit a wheel kick to the back of Jericho’s head. Omega followed up with a V-Trigger to the back of Jericho’s head in the corner. Omega set up for an avalanche snap dragon, but Jericho blocked it. Omega eventually hit a belly to back suplex off the top and both men were down. Omega set up for a V-TRigger, but Jericho cut him off with an elbow. Omega got his knees up on a Lionsault attempt. He hit a V-TRigger and went for the One-Winged Angel, but Jericho slid out and hit a release German. Jericho then hit a Lionsault that looked like it was to the back of Omega’s head. Jericho hit a second Lionsault, but he only got a two count. Omega blocked a Code Breaker and hit a V-TRigger. Jericho then backdropped Omega over the top to a table that was set up at ringside. They traded blows with OMega on the apron. Jericho hit an inside out springboard dropkick. They battled up top and Omega shoved Jericho down to the mat. Omega came off the top, but Jericho caught him with a Code Breaker. The fans fired up and Jericho made the cover for a near fall. Jericho went after Omega, but Omega caught him with a snap dragon suplex. Omega hit another snap dragon. He hit a V-Trigger. Jericho went for the Liontamer, but Omega used his legs to power him off. Omega hit a tiger driver, but couldn’t fully make the cover and he only got a two count.
Jericho blocked a V-Trigger and locked in the Liontamer. The announcers really sold Omega carrying all of his weight. Omega struggled to the ropes, but Jericho pulled him back to the center of the ring. Jericho really cranked back on the hold, but Omega kicked his way out of it. Omega caught Jericho with a V-Trigger against the ropes a short time later. They botched a One-Winged Angel into a DDT spot from Jericho. Omega then tried to make a light cover, but only got a two count. Jericho drove his knee into Omega’s temple. Jericho went for a springboard, but Omega blocked it and got Omega up on his shoulder and they repeated the DDT out of the One Winged Angel spot. Jericho then hit a big Code Breaker. Jericho then hit the Judas Effect for the win.
WINNER: Chris Jericho in 26:00 to earn the right to face Hangman Page to crown the first AEW World Champion.. (****)
(Radican’s Analysis: This was a good match. It was hard for it to stand up to the other matches on the card. They told a nice story with Jericho holding the Judas Effect in his back pocket until the very end of the match. This match ended out of nowhere with about 20 minutes of PPV time left, so it was a bit of a shock to the crowd it seemed that the match ended when it did. On the other hand, this finish does a great job of establishing Jericho’s new finish. It’s surprising that Omega lost here as it seemed almost certain that it would be Omega challenging for the first crack at the AEW World Championship.)
Jericho got on the mic. He said this is not a company for the fans, but it’s a company for him. He ran down all of AEW’s big accomplishments so far like selling out MGM Grand and getting a TV deal. Omega said this company was there to prove he’s the best. Jericho said when he beat Omega and he did by the skin of his teeth, he was going to demand one thing. Jericho said he demands a thank you.
The fans popped and Jon Moxley got into the ring and Jericho saw him when he turned around. Moxley hit his finish on Jericho and the fans popped. He then hit his finish on Paul Turner. The fans fired up huge. Moxley wore a jacket that said Mox on the back. Jim Ross said, “He may be feeling more fulfilled than he has in his tired career because this is an impact.” Omega struggled to get to his feet. The announcers said he can’t defend himself. Moxley went for his finish on Omega, but Omega drove him through the ropes and onto the broken table on the floor. The fans started a huge AEW chant as Moxley and Omega brawled into the crowd. Omega slammed Moxley into the big poker chip by the entrance ramp. They ended up brawling where the poker chips were on the stage. Moxley then hit the DDT on the poker chip and the fans fired up. WOW! Moxley lifted Omega up and hit a DVD off the poker chips through a crash box near the entrance ramp. Ross signed off as the fans went nuts.
Overall thoughts: This was a fantastic first outing overall for AEW. There are questions about whether or not they can produce compelling weekly television, but in terms of building up big shows, I don’t have a doubt about that. I believe if this was a two hour PPV instead of a three hour PPV, it would have been a total home run.
I thought the announcers struggled during the first half of the show to get comfortable. Alex Marvez in particular seemed to be having a hard time getting into the card, but once the second half of the show came along, Jim Ross, Excalibur, and Marvez did a really nice job on the card. Ross was really tremendous during the final three matches on the show.
Cody vs. Dustin was a classic throwback bloodbath that had a ton of heat. They told a great story and Dustin hit an all-time gusher. The Young Bucks vs. Lucha Bros. match was a state-of-the-art tag team classic that saw both teams put on a throwback to the classic PWG shows when you’d see this incredible match out of nowhere that was both innovative and blew your mind. The Young Bucks showcasing moves of their rivals like MCMG and Kevin Steen & El Generico was a great touch to the match.
The main event told a different kind of story and was fantastic. They built up to a very sudden, but good finish with Jericho hitting his new finisher called The Judas Effect. Jon Moxley showing up as a surprise and taking out Jericho, the ref, and then brawling with Omega was an incredible way to end the show.
The first part of the show wasn’t that bad, but it felt like they could have cut the pre-show and most of the undercard matches and had an incredible two or three hour event. Four hours is just way too much time for a new company to fill.
Overall, this was a tremendous show and if you didn’t see it live, you need to catch the replay. There were some warts with production and commentary, but they really pulled off an incredible second half of the show with two of the best matches you’ll see all year and a hell of a surprise to end the night with Jon Moxley showing up.
Contact Sean at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/sr_torch