SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
•Kip Sabian & Jimmy Havoc vs. Kenny Omega & Hangman Page – HIT
A good showcase match for Kenny Omega and Hangman Page. They make a great team and as a fan it’s satisfying to see some of that tension dissipate. This was their first tag match together since their renowned match at Revolution in February. It was odd that Kip Sabian and Jimmy Havoc earned a title shot when Best Friends are the top ranked team. This match didn’t do much for them, but Omega and Page went over strong.
•Brian Cage vs. Shawn Dean and Jon Moxley Promo – HIT
Brian Cage squashed another opponent showing off his brute strength. In the post-match, Taz cut a promo about Cage being a machine before calling out Jon Moxley. Moxley brought the intensity and made the match feel more important. Cage has only been around for a few weeks, but the presentation with Taz feels like something fresh and new despite there being several monsters with managers. They’ve built this feud well by keeping it simple and letting the characters drive the story.
•Chris Jericho vs. Colt Cabana – MISS
This was a good use of Colt Cabana showing what he can do against a top player like Chris Jericho. Cabana is capable of being more than a comedy wrestler as he is able to get a good match out of just about anyone. Sammy Guevara singing Judas during Jericho’s entrance was a huge miss. It may get a few laughs because singing Jericho’s theme became a staple of the in-arena experience. But I feel Sammy’s growth as a character has been stifled with the over-the-top comedy. That’s been an issue that has plagued the entire Inner Circle. In the post-match, Jericho called out Mike Tyson after their brawl last week and instead was met with Orange Cassidy. I’m raising the red flag on this one. I’m a fan of Cassidy, but without a crowd his gimmick loses its luster.
•Britt Baker recovery video – HIT
Now that Britt Baker is in a wheelchair, of course she calls herself the “roll model”. A fun vignette of Baker on the road to recovery. Baker was her delusional nasty self performing limited exercises. This is the second time AEW has poked fun at an athlete recovering from injury with MJF sitting out many weeks to care for his shaving cut and hang nail.
•Big Swole vs. Nyla Rose – HIT
A fine match that re-established Nyla Rose as a top contender in the Women’s division. Big Swole got in some offense, but came up short. In the post-match, Swole was asked about taking time off and tonight being her first match since March 4th. Britt Baker antagonized Swole by ramming her golf cart into the barricade. Britt is still months away from a return to the ring, but she’s going to continue making enemies in the meantime.
•FTR Interview – HIT
It’s refreshing to see a new act that isn’t dark, comedy, or a monster. FTR are two badass guys who want to be the best. Not everyone needs an over-the-top gimmick to get them noticed. FTR brings that sports feel Tony Khan touted about. They have a plethora of opponents in AEW with the obvious opponent being The Young Bucks. Fans will likely have to rejoice in the dream match from home.
•Cody vs. Jungle Boy – HIT
Jungle Boy is on track for most improved this year. He’s had a good stretch of matches since facing MJF. Tonight wasn’t the time for Jungle Boy as AEW seems to be building towards his big victory that would catapult him to the next level. Cody did what he was capable of and helped make it a memorable match with the use of blood. MJF got in Jungle Boy’s face pointing to the continuation of their feud. After the match, Cody hugged and showed respect to Jungle Boy. This all felt similar to the encounters Cody has had with Darby Allin of going the distance, but falling short.