12/22 AEW DARK TV REPORT: Jurassic Express vs. Bear Country, Miro vs. Sonny Kiss, Serpentico vs. Sydal, Lee Johnson vs. Stu Grayson, plus Fenix, Hirsch, Avalon, Dark Order, Gunn Club, more

By Patrick Moynahan, PWTorch contributor

Analysis, detail, and results of this week's episode of AEW Dark

SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...

AEW DARK TV REPORT
DECEMBER 22, 2020
RECORDED AT DAILY’S PLACE, JACKSONVILLE, FLA.
AIRED ON YOUTUBE.COM
REPORT BY PATRICK MOYNAHAN, PWTORCH CONTRIBUTOR

Announcers: Excalibur and Taz.

Additional announcers throughout the show: Ricky Starks

Ring announcer: Justin Roberts

– Excalibur and Taz welcomed us to Dark.

(1) JURASSIC EXPRESS (Jungle Boy & Luchasaurus w/Marko Stunt) vs. BEAR COUNTRY (Bear Boulder & Bear Bronson)

Jungle Boy and Bronson kicked things off. Jungle Boy used his quickness to allude Bronson early on. Jungle Boy landed a series of dropkicks, which knocked Bronson back to his corner, allowing him to tag in Boulder. Luchasaurus tagged in briefly and squared off with Boulder. Jungle Boy tagged back in and hit a rolling senton off Luchasaurus’s shoulders. Bronson hit an impressive suplex on Jungle Boy, annoying Taz for ‘gimmick infringement’ in the process. Boulder tagged in and laid into Jungle Boy. Jungle Boy went for a tag but had to fight out of an arm bar by Bronson. Jungle Boy finally made the hot tag to Luchasaurus, who came in and took it to both opponents. Luchasaurus hit a chokeslam, then a standing moonsault onto Bronson. Boulder came in to break up the pin attempt. All men came into the ring, and Bronson hit his Monster Driver onto Luchasaurus. Boulder went to the top and landed an impressive moonsault onto Jungle Boy but could only get a two count. Bear Country attempted a double team move, but Luchasaurus came off the top rope and hit a Doomsday Device-type clothesline. Bronson was hit with a corkscrew kick by Luchasaurus, then a clothesline from behind by Jungle Boy, who covered Bronson for the win.

WINNERS: Jurassic Express in 7:30

(Moynahan’s Take: Great way to kick off the show. Jurassic Express looked really good here, but I think Bear Country stole the match, as they got a lot of impressive offense in. Really interested to see if Bear Country continues to gain traction here as the weeks move on.)

(2) TESHA PRICE vs. NYLA ROSE

Price offered Rose a handshake. Rose accepted but synched in hard. Price came out swinging from there, getting a few shots in. Rose put a quick stop to that, knocking Price down hard with a right hand. Rose hit a Samoan drop, then a back breaker, and finally a fall away slam. Vickie Guerrero looked on with delight. Rose knocked Price down with a hard clothesline, then followed it up with a running knee to her head. Rose draped Price on the top rope, then climbed to the top and came off hard with a knee drop. Rose covered for the win.

WINNER: Nyla Rose in 3:00

(Moynahan’s Take: An impressive quick win for Nyla Rose. Price took a beating, which helped Rose shine.)

(3) SONNY KISS vs. MIRO (w/Kip Sabian)

Miro started things off with a stiff round kick to Kiss’s head, dropping him to the mat. Miro went in for the Game Over, but Kiss alluded. Kiss hit a split leg jawbreaker, then a hurricanrana. Kiss slapped Miro across the face, which ticked Miro off. Kiss hit another hurricanrana, then went for a roll up pin, but could only get a two. Miro nailed Kiss on the side of the head. Miro landed multiple kicks to Kiss’s back, then locked in the Game Over for the submission win.

WINNER: Miro in 3:00

(Moynahan’s Take: I’d call this a complete squash but Kiss actually got in some solid offense early. It didn’t last long once he Miro kicked it into gear. A good showing by Miro going into the wedding announcement tomorrow on Dynamite.)

– A “Wrestling with the Week” podcast ad aired

– “The Waiting Room” with Dr. Britt Baker was next. Baker arrived, and thanked Tony Kahn for fixing the waiting room set. She briefly turned her attention to Thunder Rosa, but then announced that Sting would be her guest next week (really?). Baker previewed a few matches on tomorrow’s Dynamite, then introduced Frankie Kazarian and Christopher Daniels. SCU was in no mood for fun. Kazarian talked about how things were supposed to be different for their team when they started out in AEW. Kazarian said he always knew he could rely on his SCU team members, until now. He said any time they have been defeated as a team, it’s been because of Daniels. Kazarian said that everything he’s ever wanted, and has, is due to wrestling. He called Daniels his best friend and brother, and then apologized for allowing professional issues to affect his personal friendships. Daniels cut him off, saying there was no need for Kazarian to apologize, and that he should be the one to apologize to Kazarian. Daniels said 2020 was the worst year of his professional life, and made it sound like he was contemplating retirement. Kazarian told him that was not an option; that Daniels could not do that to all his friends, family, and fans. Kazarian asked Daniels to fight by his side, and that they will work their way back to the tag titles. He then added, the next time they lose as a tag team, they will be officially finished tagging together forever. Daniels looked stunned, and was about to walk off, then turned around and said, “let’s do it.” SCU then turned their attention to TH2 in the crowd and challenged them to a match. SCU walked off. Baker was mad she wasn’t able to say anything on her own show. She wished us a Merry Christmas to close the segment.

(4) THUNDER ROSA vs. JAZMIN ALLURE

Allure made her AEW debut here. Thunder Rosa knocked Allure down to the mat in the early going. Allure tried to mount some offense, but Thunder Rosa hit a knee strike to Allure’s midsection. With Allure draped across the second rope, Rosa nailed a double knee strike to hers back. Rosa followed things up with a running powerslam. With Allure in the corner, Rosa landed a few stiff chops, but Allure alluded a follow up running strike by Rosa. Rosa hit a combo strike, then a Fire Thunder Driver to get the win.

WINNER: Thunder Rose in 4:00

(Moynahan’s Take: A good showing by Thunder Rosa, and fine debut for Allure. It’s worth mentioning that Thunder Rosa spoke directly to the camera after the match, calling out Britt Baker for her attack on last week’s Dynamite.)

(5) LEE JOHNSON (w/QT Marshall) vs. STU GRAYSON (w/Evil Uno)

Grayson charged at Johnson early, taking it to him in the corner. Johnson hit Grayson with a running elbow, knocking him to the mat. Grayson came back, hitting a dropkick. Johnson went for a springboard senton, but Grayson nailed him with a boot, then hit his own springboard senton as Johnson laid on the apron. Back inside, Grayson kept the offensive momentum. Johnson fought back with a few rights, but Grayson dropped him with a single punch. Johnson came back, catching Grayson with a spinning kick, then a few clotheslines. Johnson hit a blue thunder bomb but could only get a two count. Grayson landed a dragon suplex, then a flipping back kick to Johnson’s face. Grayson hit a springboard 450 splash off the ropes for a two count. Johnson hit Grayson with a buckle bomb in the corner, then climbed to the top and hit a corkscrew. The two went outside. Grayson hoisted Johnson up and his shoulders and threw him right into the ring post, ribs first. Back inside, Grayson hit a knee strike. Grayson hit the Night Fall and got the pin.

WINNER: Stu Grayson in 8:00

– After the match, Grayson showed respect to Johnson, which caught QT and Johnson off guard.

(Moynahan’s Take: Okay, wow, this was good. I thought it was over about halfway through, and they just kept going… thankfully. Really great match, and a good showing by the young Lee Johnson.)

(6) KILYNN KING vs. ALEX GRACIA

Excalibur noted at the start of this match that the winner would face Shida on tomorrow’s Dynamite. The two locked up, with King taking the early advantage. Gracia hit a modified 619 on King but could only get a two count. Gracia sent King into the corner, then followed up with an elbow, then a running kick to King’s face. King hit a release German suplex. Gracia came back and hit an impressive neck breaker, and cover for the upset win.

WINNER: Alex Gracia in 4:00

(Moynahan’s Take: This was sloppy in parts and didn’t get me excited to see the winner face Shida on Dynamite. With that said, I think Gracia is the better matchup on paper.)

– An Inner Circle “Little Bit of the Bubbly” ad aired

(7) “PRETTY” PETER AVALON vs. MIKE VERNA

Avalon started things off by announcing the start of the “Pretty Peter’s Pageant Provocation.” He introduced his opponent, Mike Verna, as the first one to accept the challenge. The two exchanged side headlocks and went back and forth early on. Verna hit a slingshot suplex on Avalon, bouncing Avalon across each top rope before landing the move. Avalon came back, focusing on Verna’s left arm. Avalon sent Verna to the apron, but Verna countered with a knee lift. Avalon was able to hoist Verna on the top turnbuckle, and attempted a high risk move, but was pushed down to the mat. Verna had Avalon in the corner, then charged in hard with a stiff elbow. Verna hit a fisherman’s suplex but could only get a two count. Verna went for his own high risk move, a senton off the top, but missed. Avalon followed up by hitting his Martini finisher for the win.

WINNER: Peter Avalon in 5:00

(Moynahan’s Take: This was what it was. I’m fine with the Pageant idea as a weekly Dark-specific angle, just not my cup of tea overall.)

(8) VERTVIXEN vs. RED VELVET

Vertvixen started off with a stiff elbow shot to Velvet’s face. The two traded offense early, with Velvet taking the upper hand. Velvet hit a standing moonsault press for a two count. Vertvixen sat on the top rope but was caught and thrown down to the mat. Velvet followed it up with a single leg dropkick, then covered for the pin.

WINNER: Red Velvet in 2:30

(Moynahan’s Take: This was okay for what it was. A lot of back-and-forth action in the little time they were given. I’m interested to see more of Vertvixen, if given the opportunity.)

– A “Wrestling with the Week” podcast ad aired

(9) THE DARK ORDER (Colt Cabana & “5” & “10”) vs. AARON SOLOW & RAY JAZ & FUEGO DEL SOL

Cabana and Del Sol started things off, with Cabana knocking him down then posing for the crowd. Cabana called for a clothesline, but didn’t attempt it, which tricked Del Sol. “5” Alan Angels tagged in to face off with Solow. Solow landed a stiff dropkick, knocking “5” into the corner. “5” came right back with a very stiff left hand. “10” Preston Vance tagged in, as did Ray Jaz, making his AEW debut. The two traded waist locks, before “10” hit a spine buster. Dark Order cut off the ring, keeping Jaz in their corner, and making quick tags. Jaz fought back against “10,” and was able to finally tag in Del Sol, who launched off of “10’s” back and hit Cabana with a dropkick. Dark Order came in and proceeded to hit a few double team moves, first on Del Sol, then on Jaz. Cabana and “10” hit a combo elbow strike and clothesline on Del Sol, then covered him for the win.

WINNERS: The Dark Order in 4:30

(Moynahan’s Take: This was so-so in my view, mainly due to the slower start. It picked up toward the end as the three Dark Order members double teamed Del Sol and took the win.)

– A Young Bucks book ad aired

(10) LELYA HIRSCH vs. MADI WRENKOWSKI

Wrenkowski made her AEW debut here. Hirsch went right at Wrenkowski, taking her to the mat with a double leg takedown. Hirsch tried locking in a cross arm bar, but Wrenkowski was able to get the ropes. Wrenkowski landed a dropkick. Wrenkowski followed it up with a stiff knee strike to Hirsch’s stomach. Hirsch vaulted off Wrenkowski’s back, and hit a German suplex, but could only get a two count. Wrenkowski hit an X-factor on Hirsch, but again, only for a two count. Hirsch mounted a comeback and was able to lock in the arm bar for the tap out.

WINNER: Leyla Hirsch in 3:00

(Moynahan’s Take: Good showing by Hirsch, who really has made herself look “legit” in every match I’ve seen her in thus far.)

(11) TNT (Terrell & Terrence Hughes) vs. THE GUNN CLUB (Austin & Colten)

Terrence and Colten kicked things off. They shook hands in a nice show of respect. Colten landed a shoulder tackle, knocking Terrence to the mat. Terrence came right back with a hip toss. Austin tagged in, as did Terrell. Terrell hit a series of deep arm drags, but Austin countered into a headlock. Colten tagged in, and The Gunn Club members did a good job of keeping Terrell in their corner after a series of double team moves. TNT had their turn, making quick tags and hitting double team moves on Austin. TNT went for another double team move, but Austin reversed and made the tag to Colten. Colten cleaned house, and was able to hit the Colt 45, a double underhook neck breaker, for the win.

WINNERS: The Gunn Club in 6:00

(Moynahan’s Take: A good tag team match, and a solid showing by both second-generation tag teams. Worth noting both teams were babyfaces in this one too.)

– An Inner Circle “Little Bit of the Bubbly” ad aired

(12) REY FENIX vs. DANNY LIMELIGHT

Both men started off fast, reversing one another’s moves. They faced off in the center of the ring, trading stiff chops, with Fenix coming out on top. Fenix hit an impressive dropkick. Fenix went for a package piledriver but Limelight got out and hit a spinning kick. The two squared off in the center of the ring, once again trading shots. Limelight hit a hanging neck breaker for a two count. Limelight whipped Fenix into the corner, but Fenix fought back with a thrust kick. Fenix wrapped Limelight’s legs in the bottom ropes. Limelight came off Fenix’s back with a double foot stomp in the process. With each man perched on the top turnbuckles, they walked across the middle ropes and met in the center. Limelight came off the top rope but Fenix hit him with a superkick. Fenix hit a spinning muscle buster for the win.

WINNER: Rey Fenix in 6:00

(Moynahan’s Take: Not sure I could follow that in real-time, but then again, not sure Taz and Excalibur were able to either. That was an impressive match in the time they were given. Great set up for Fenix’s title match with Kenny Omega in a few weeks.)

(13) SERPENTICO (w/Luther) vs. MATT SYDAL

Serpentico dove for Sydal’s legs to start but missed with each attempt. After some back-and-forth, Luther pulled Serpentico out of the ring to offer him a pep talk. Sydal hit a sunset flip for a two. After the two count, Sydal kept Serpentico in the pinning position, but locked in a submission. Sydal missed a standing moonsault. The two found themselves on the outside. Luther picked up Serpentico and threw him into Sydal. Serpentico threw Sydal into the metal barrier. Back inside, Serpentico continued to maintain the advantage, hitting a springboard into a double foot stomp. Sydal mounted a comeback by hitting a leg lariat. Serpentico fought back with a low-angle DDT, but could only manage a two count. Luther screamed at Serpentico from the outside, telling him to climb to the top rope. It didn’t work out well, as Sydal rolled away and then hit a stiff side slam. Sydal hit a Russian leg sweep, then rolled into a submission. Serpentico countered with the slice bread #2 and got a near three-count. Sydal came back with a knee strike, a roundhouse kick, then planted Serpentico with a modified swinging neck breaker for the three count.

WINNER: Matt Sydal in 9:00

(Moynahan’s Take: Good main event, although I could have finished with Fenix and Limelight to be honest. Not sure where the team of Serpentico and Luther can go from here, but I do enjoy the interplay between the two of them.)

FINAL THOUGHTS: This week’s Dark was hit and miss in my opinion. The few shining moments included the opener between Bear Country and Jurassic Express, and Fenix vs. Limelight. With that said, this week’s match of the week honors goes to Lee Johnson and Stu Grayson. Thinking back, I’d say this one edged out the Fenix/Limelight match primarily because I went into it with little to no expectations. I think that says a lot about Johnson more than anything in this case. Looking forward to next week’s episode already. In the meantime, happy holidays everyone – stay safe!


CATCH UP… 12/15 AEW DARK TV REPORT: Chaos Project vs. Best Friends, plus Starks, Cutler, Shida, Brit Baker, Jurrasic Express, Leva Bates, Brian Cage, The Acclaimed, Kiss & Janela, more

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