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AEW DARK TV REPORT
SEPTEMBER 1, 2020
RECORDED AT DAILY’S PLACE, JACKSONVILLE, FLA.
AIRED ON YOUTUBE.COM
REPORT BY NICK MORGAN, PWTORCH CONTRIBUTOR
Announcers: Excalibur and Taz
Ring announcer: Justin Roberts
– Excalibur was back! He was joined at the announce desk by Taz, no Tony Schiavone tonight. Some quick banter and then right to the ring.
(1) EDDIE TAURUS vs. SHAWN SPEARS (w/Tully Blanchard)
Announcers played up Eddie Taurus’ size (240-250 lbs) and that he has been around for a long time. Shawn Spears came in with Tully Blanchard and played up his glove gimmick and then the match was on. In the early going, Spears had the advantage with some mid-ring mat wrestling. The two exchanged moves and Spears somewhat mockingly shook Taurus’s hand. Spears suddenly got violent with a series of kicks and punches, throwing Taurus to the floor. Spears kept up the beating back in the ring. Taurus got in a couple of strikes, but Spears quickly took back the advantage and ended things with a C4 for the three-count.
WINNER: Shawn Spears in 4:00.
As normal with Spears, after the pin, Tully sneaked Spears the metal slug which Spears put in the glove and delivered a head blow to the already out Taurus.
(Morgan’s Take: This one followed the Shawn Spears script to the letter, starting out with some mat moves followed up by Spears brutalizing his opponent. His opponents get in a minimum of offense and then Spears finishes them off. He then uses the loaded glove to just be a heel. Very ho-hum, and if Spears doesn’t get some more personality or motivation, he is not moving up at all.)
(2) SANTANA & ORTIZ vs. FABOO ANDRE & RYZIN
Faboo Andre and Ryzin came out looking really stupid and admiring their names on the big screen. Santana and Ortiz came out looking serious and mean. Ortiz even went over and interacted a bit with Taz.
Santana quickly got control of Ryzin with a headlock, Ryzin reversed but Santana escaped with a few punches to the stomach. Santana hit a trio of suplexes and tagged in Ortiz who laid into Ryzin. Ryzin fought out of the corner and was able to tag in Faboo, who came in and I guess you could say he hit a drop kick, but he missed badly, but Ortiz sold it anyway, stumbling into the corner.
Faboo got in a little more offense until Ortiz hit him with a couple of stiff shots to the kidneys and upper back. Ortiz hit a clothesline off the ropes to Faboo and then went and knocked Ryzin to the floor. While Ortiz strutted around, Santana hit a topee on Ryzin on the floor. As this was happening, Ortiz hit a sit out powerbomb and threw Faboo into the ropes face first allowing Santana, who was on the apron, to kick him in the face. Faboo fell back into the ring where Ortiz applied the pin for the three-count.
WINNERS: Santana & Ortiz in 3:00.
(Morgan’s Take: Santana& Ortiz were super serious and there was no joking around here. They just demolished these two jokers. I really can’t wait till we see this kind of intensity from Santana & Ortiz on the main show. They are really talented and need to be taken more seriously on Dynamite.)
– After the match Santana grabbed a mike and cut a promo on The Best Friends which included Ortiz getting the mike and telling The Best Friends to tell Sue (Trent’s mother) to stop hitting up his phone, that he is not coming to dinner, and the drawers he left should be considered a gift. A very heelish promo which should elicit a response from the Best Friends.
(3) ALLIE (w/Q.T. Marshall) vs. CASSANDRA GOLDEN
After an initial tie up in the middle of the ring, Cassandra Golden pushed Allie, then tried a kick which Allie turned into a rollup pin attempt for a one-count. Allie got Golden in the corner and laid in several shots followed up by an elbow and a neck breaker. Allie continued with a sliding elbow, which took her outside to the floor. She demanded that Q.T. lift back onto the apron when Golden tried to take advantage of the distraction, Allie instead hung her up on the top rope. Allie continued with a clothesline and a few knee lifts. Golden broke her momentum with a side slam for a one-count. Allie crawled to the corner and Golden came in with a hip attack. Allie fought out of a chin lock with several elbow to the gut, grabbed Golden’s hair and slammed her backwards into the mat. Allie hit Golden with a barrage of kicks and a running bulldog. This was followed by Allie’s guillotine elbow to the chest finisher for the three-count.
WINNER: Allie in 4:00.
(Morgan’s Take: Allie is still pretty raw (no pun intended) but she did ok here with an equally raw Casandra Golden. Right before Allie hit her finisher, she blew Q.T. a kiss, which I thought was a fun touch. She has some potential, but just needs time and repetitions so that her moves don’t look so forced and choreographed.)
– After the match Dasha caught up with Santana and Ortiz outside and asked them about the “harsh” comments regarding Trent’s mom. They pretty much ignored her and as they were amongst some trailers, The Best Friends jumped them, and they started beating each other up. Dasha ran into frame calling for somebody to get out there “right now!”. Of course, no one showed up, and Dasha just walked off. Up until Dasha reinserted herself and then left, this was good. Having Dasha screaming for help and then walking off, made it silly.
(4) FRANKIE KAZARIAN vs. ANGELICO
The announcers noted that both Frankie Kazarian and Angelico are mostly tag team wrestlers and that both fighting singles should be interesting. Both wrestlers exchanged mat wrestling moves in the middle of the ring without either gaining a real advantage. This back and forth continued for a while until Angelico was able to wrap Kazarian up and applied an ankle lock. Kazarian reached the ropes to break the hold. Some mat moves ensued, and they traded back quick one-counts. Ultimately. They ended up in the corner, where Angelico finally blasted Kazarian with a shot to the face. Angelico got Kazarian to the mat and put him in several different submission moves but Kazarian would not give up.
Kazarian was definitely the worse for wear but was able to pop out of the corner and hit several strong shots to Angelico. He nailed Angelico with a body slam and hit a middle rope leg drop for a near fall. After an enziguri off the mat, Angelico rolled up Kazarian for a two-count. After exchanging a couple of moves and an attempt at a slam by Angelico, Kazarian hit a reverse DDT and get the pin.
WINNER: Frankie Kazarian in 8:00.
(Morgan’s Take: I have no idea why they gave this match eight minutes, especially considering every other match on this show is usually around four to five minutes. While mat wrestling can be fun to watch, it has to be done be two people who can really sell the moves and the perceived pain they are causing. These two guys were just kind of boring and there was no story they were telling. The announcers tried to make like Angelico was some expert at a kind of wrestling technique, but it just didn’t sell on the screen. If you are watching Dark this week, this is one you can fast forward through.)
– Tony Schiavone showed up on the stage to interview Brandi Rhodes. Brandi came out and of course made a big deal about putting her action figure in Tony’s pocket. Schiavone asked Brandi about her and Allie losing the tag cup and about what happed to her and Cody at the hands of Anna Jay and the Dark Order.
Brandi acted all hurt that “a trainee from the nightmare factory training facility” would listen to daddy Brodie and choke her out from behind. She proceeded to call out Anna Jay and said one of the greatest clichés in history,” if you are going to go for the Queen, you better not miss”. She also made all sorts of comments about how Anna Jay thinks she is pretty but that she is not very smart, and that if she comes for the Queen again and misses, Brandi is going to send her right back to the Nightmare Factory.
(Morgan’s Take: Absolutely horrible. Anna Jay is in a heel faction and did heelish things to Brandi, and yet, here is Brandi basically cutting a heel promo. Its one thing if John Moxley acts like a badass, but with Brandi, it just comes off as stupid and heelish. Get this woman off AEW.)
(5) DONNIE PRIMETIME & RYAN REMBRANDT vs. BILLY GUNN & AUSTIN GUNN
Billy Gunn and Ryan Rembrandt started things off. Billy took Rembrandt to the mat in a headlock and held on while he tagged in Austin Gunn. Austin hit a dropkick to the legs for a one count then tagged in Billy. Billy lifted up Rembrandt and Austin came off the top rope with a clothesline while Billy applied the pin for a two-count. After tagging in, Austin got careless and Rembrandt was able to hit several moves, maneuvered Austin to his corner and tagged in Donnie Primetime.
Donnie kept up the attack, but backed off to gloat and taunt Billy Gunn, Austin took the opportunity to land a flying double fist to the neck on Donnie and tagged in his dad. After a couple of quick tags, Austin hit the Quick Draw on Donnie and got the pin.
WINNERS: Billy Gunn & Austin Gunn in 4:00.
(Morgan’s Take: Not much here, a very quick match against sub-par talent in an obvious move to build up the Gunn Club’s record. As the announcers and the Gunns took great pains to tell us, the Gunn Club is now 6-0. Unless you are a big fan of the Gunn Club, this is another match you can speed through.)
(6) DANI JORDYN vs. ABADON
Dani Jordyn is supposed to be some kind of “mean girl”. It did not work versus Abadon. Abadon did her full creepy entrance. Jordyn was clearly psyched out, but she did put up some offense. After getting thrown into the corner Abadon came out with a vicious flying clothesline and then went after Jordyn’s right knee that had a brace on it. Jordyn sold a ton of pain in her knee and sold the knee to the point of collapsing when Abadon threw her into the corner. Abadon no sold a clothesline, popping up ala the Undertaker. Abadon then just went after the knee again and again. Abadon finally got the submission win with a leg bar and several hard strikes directly on Jordyn’s knee.
WINNER: Abadon in 5:00.
(Morgan’s Take: Dani Jordyn was simply sacrificed to Abadon. She needs some more time, look for her in a year maybe. As for Abadon, to a large degree, she is all gimmick, but it is effective. AEW seems to like her, as the announce team made a point of letting us know that she is currently ranked fourth in the women’s division. It is hard to tell in these squash matches if she has the chops for a major push, but the act is something else. I would wager that her push will wait until there are a lot more fans present as her gimmick is what gets her over.)
(7) RICKY STARKS vs. TONY DONATI
Taz was all over promoting one of his guys, and Ricky Starks even came out wearing a “Team Taz” shirt. Push that merchandise.
Starks offered a handshake to Tony Donati but pulled it away. Donati tried for a quick roll up but only got a one-count. Donati went for several different roll up pins, but Starks finally threw Donati out of the ring and then pounded Donati into the ring apron. Back in the ring, Starks continues the abuse, with a spear in the corner followed by a missile drop kick from the middle rope. Donati tried for a sunset flip which Starks blocked, but Donati kept going and got a roll up two-count. After kicking out, Starks put a knee into Donati’s midsection and followed it up with his Roshambo finisher for the win. Starks had a little problem getting Donati up, but to his credit he hung in there and was finally able to muscle Donati into position for the move. Good effort.
WINNER: Ricky Starks in 4:00.
(Morgan’s Take: There was really very little doubt about the outcome here, but the main effort was to promote the upcoming match with Darby Allen. While the match was going on, all Taz talked about after he mentioned Brian Cage a couple of times was home much Starks hated Allen and what Starks was going to do to Allen at All Out. Mission accomplished for this match. I really enjoy Starks and think he is a great addition to the roster and is a great fit with Taz.)
(8) JUNGLE BOY & LUCHASAURUS (w/Marko Stunt) vs. JON CRUZ & DAVID ALI
As with many of the “jobber” tag teams, announce team noted that this was the first time Jon Cruz and David Ali were teamed up. When Jungle Boy and Luchasaurus came out, Marko Stunt came out on crutches and a walking boot, curtesy of Jake Hager.
Jon Cruz got some early offense but Luchasaurus nailed him with a belly to belly suplex that sent him all the way across the ring. David Ali tagged in and after Luchasaurus tagged in Jungle Boy, JB hit several high-flying spots then tagged in Luchasaurus. David Ali maneuvered out of slam attempt by Luchasaurus but Jungle Boy who was still in the ring caught him in a full nelson and picked him up some Luchasaurus could hit him with the tail whip kick, followed by a flatliner by Jungle Boy. Luchasaurus went for the pin but could only get a two count as Cruz broke it up.
After breaking up the pin, Cruz scurried out of the ring, while Luchasaurus abused Ali with punches, forearms, knees and kicks. He finally picked him up for a vertical suplex, but rather than continuing the move just dropped him straight down. Ali was somehow able to land an elbow to Luchasaurus, knock Jungle Boy off the apron and make the hot tag to Cruz. Cruz hit a double ax handle off the top rope and a kick to the head and signaled Ali to come in for the double team. Their advantage was short-lived as Luchasaurus hit a variety of vicious knees and round house kicks to both men. Jungle Boy came in and they beat up Ali badly, but when they went for the pin, the ref, Aubrey Edwards, advised them that Ali was not the legal man. So Luchasaurus picked up Cruz and he and Jungle Boy did a combination slam/neck breaker and Jungle Boy got the three-count.
WINNERS: Jungle Boy & Luchasaurus in 5:00.
(Morgan’s Take: Jungle Boy and Luchasaurus did everything we have come to expect and it was fun to watch, but this is one match that should not have followed the AEW Dark model of giving the jobbers some offense, especially with Luchasaurus starting the match. He should have easily handled both of these guys in a minute or two.)
(9) ANNA JAY (w/Dark Order) vs. RED VELVET
Anna Jay offered her hand for a test of strength, but when Red Velvet appeared to accept, Anna Jay kicked her in the mid-section. The two traded leg lariats, and Red Velvet took the advantage in the corner. After both ran the ropes, Anna Jay nailed Red Velvet with a knee to the stomach and then blatantly chocked her with both hands in the middle of the ring. Regaining her feet, Red Velvet was able to throw Anna Jay into the ropes and attempted a split trip but mis-timed in and Anna Jay flipped over her and slammed Velvet’s face into the mat. The wrestlers exchanged forearms and Velvet followed up with two clotheslines which put Anna Jay resting on the second rope where Velvet hit a double-knees to her back for a near fall.
After kicking out of the pin attempt, Anna Jay landed a right cross to Velvet’s chin and a leg kick to her chest, which sent Velvet to the mat. Velvet rolled to the floor where Anna Jay clotheslined her and then threw her into the barricades before tossing her back into the ring. Anna Jay laid in two kicks to Velvet’s back and then put her into a rear naked choke. Red Velvet first tapped out and then passed out and Anna Jay got the win.
WINNER: Anna Jay in 5:00.
(Morgan’s Take: Anna Jay is getting the job done. Her moves look good and she doesn’t appear clunky at all. Who ever is producing her matches is keeping it simple and Anna Jay comes out looking good. I also think she is doing ok with her heelish mannerisms and I see potential here. As for Red Velvet, she too, looked good in this match. She did not appear as clean as Anna Jay, but in a well curated match she con put on a show.)
(10) KIP SABIAN (w/Penelope Ford) vs. SHAWN DEAN
Kip Sabian started the match with his sunglasses on, while he and Shawn Dean worked the mat. Dean hit a couple of arm drags and a drop kick and Sabian lost his sunglasses that the ref carefully placed in the corner. Dean had a wrist lock on Sabian but Sabian poked Dean in the eye and went on offense. After four upper cuts from Dean, Sabian hit a powerful knee which put Dean on his butt and Sabian hit him with a punt kick and posed as if looking to see if the kick went through the uprights (yup football season is around the corner). The ref got in on the fun and called the kick wide, right.
While Sabian was joking around, Dean came up from behind and hit a snap suplex, followed up by a couple of clotheslines and a DDT for a near fall. Sabian was able to hit a pop-up knee and a discus forearm to Dean’s chest. Sabian locked up Dean’s head and draped him on the top rope and delivered a twisting neck breaker for the pin.
WINNER: Kip Sabian in 5:00.
(Morgan’s Take: Not much to say here really. Both wrestlers got in several moves and the action was fast and crisp. But bottom line was that it was a five-minute match that you just knew that Sabian was going to win.)
(11) PETER AVALON & BRANDON CUTLER (w/Leva Bates) vs. PRIVATE PARTY (Marq Quen & Isiah Kassidy)
Brandon Cutler and Marq Quen started things off, but Cutler quickly tagged in Peter Avalon who got in several moves including a low drop kick while Quen was on the mat. Cutler tagged in but was ineffective and Isiah Kassidy kit an impressive double body slam off the top rope. After several tags, Avalon hit a cross body and a drop kick to Kassidy and a topee to Quen on the outside. With Kassidy down in the corner, Avalon went to the top turnbuckle for a split legged moonsault for a two-count.
Cutler tagged in but Kassidy blocked a double team back drop and then made the tag to Quen who hit a moonsault from the top rope onto both Avalon and Cutler. Quen hit the Fosbury Flop over the top rope to take out Avalon on the floor. Leva Bates went for a hurricanranna on Quen, but he was able to cartwheel out of it and landed on his feet. Quen reentered the ring and went for a running splash on Cutler. Cutler sidestepped but Kassidy made the tag unknown to Cutler. Cutler went to the top rope and hit a 450 splash on Quen, but Aubrey Edwards waved off the pin.
Kassidy charged into the ring and rolled Cutler off Quen who he was still trying to pin. Kassidy continued through and rolled up Cutler for the three-count and the win.
WINNERS: Private Party (Marq Quen & Isiah Kassidy) in 5:00.
After Private Party left the right, Peter Avalon, tired of always losing, clotheslined Brandon Cutler and then hit him with the 20-sided die that Leva Bates brings to the ring. So much for this tag team.
(Morgan’s Take: This was a win for Private Party who AEW is trying very hard to build up. They are very flashy, have a ton of moves and are fun to watch. Tonight, in a relatively short match for the main event of Dark, Peter Avalon and Brandon Cutler gave them a good match with some nice moves. An ok match and good watch. The end of match angle could be seen coming a mile away as Avalon seethed in the corner. This team hasn’t won a single match, so their breakup was kind of inevitable.)
FINAL THOUGHTS: There really isn’t a ton to say about Dark. It serves its purpose to build up wrestlers’ won-lost records. They are promoting the pay-per-views and the main show (Dynamite), so that is good. This week there were I feel two standout matches: Santana and Ortiz and the Anna Jay match.
Both of these matches seemed to advance storyline and especially for Santana and Ortiz, showed their badass characteristics that are sometimes missing AEW Dynamite. I also found the Kip Sabian match enjoyable, as was the Jungle Boy & Luchasaurus match.
That’s it for now, enjoy, take care and stay safe.