3/29 AEW DARK ELEVATION REPORT: Moxley appears, Shida & Conti team up, more

BY PATRICK MOYNAHAN, PWTORCH CONTRIBUTOR

PHOTO CREDIT: AEW

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AEW DARK: ELEVATION TV REPORT
MARCH 29, 2021
JACKSONVILLE, FLA. AT DAILY’S PLACE
AIRED ON YOUTUBE
REPORT BY PATRICK MOYNAHAN, PWTORCH CONTRIBUTOR

Announcers: Paul Wight and Tony Schiavone

Ring announcer: Justin Roberts

– Jon Moxley kicked off this week’s Dark: Elevation with a backstage promo. He said he keeps getting jumped and beat up and wondered how he could make himself feel better. He said he was happy to be in action tonight on Dark: Elevation.

– Tony Schiavone and Paul Wight welcomed us to the third episode of AEW Dark: Elevation.

(1) ORANGE CASSIDY & CHUCK TAYLOR vs. RYAN NEMETH & J.D. DRAKE

Taylor kicked things off for his team, taking on both opponents before tagging in Cassidy. Cassidy decided not to bother with Drake, so he tagged Taylor back in. Nemeth tagged in but was met with stiff shots by Taylor in the corner. Cassidy tagged back in and mimed helping Taylor with a double team move. Taylor tagged back in, and once again, Cassidy barely helped him with a double team on Nemeth. Nemeth and Drake took advantage of the distracted ref, taking it to Taylor on the outside. Taylor tried fighting back but Drake ran right over him with a clothesline. Drake and Nemeth kept Taylor in their own corner, making quick tags in the process. Taylor hit a drop toe hold on Drake, which drove him right into Nemeth. Cassidy tagged in and laid in some stiff toe taps to Drake’s shins. Drake cut him down, but Cassidy got right up. Cassidy took Drake down while his hands were still in his pockets. Cassidy hit a cutter, then a spinning DDT. Nemeth broke up the pin attempt. Nemeth tagged in and hit his own DDT on Cassidy. Nemeth and Drake double teamed Taylor until Nemeth was thrown outside. Drake caught Cassidy coming off the top. Cassidy hit Drake with the Orange Punch and then hit him with the Beach Break for the win.

WINNERS: Orange Cassidy & Chuck Taylor in 7:00

– After the match, Kip and Miro hit the stage. Kip wished Taylor and Cassidy luck, but Miro said he didn’t. Miro said he wished a lot of painful things on them in their upcoming Arcade Anarchy match on Dynamite this week. As Taylor and Cassidy were leaving, Miro and Kip attacked them and took them out on the stage.

(Moynahan’s Take: Orange Cassidy debuted his much talked about new theme music, “Where Is My Mind?” by the Pixies. Taylor was the workhorse for his team in this one, but he and Cassidy worked well together. Love seeing more of Drake since his initial time on Dark and hoping to see him again soon. A good post-match follow up too with Miro continuing to show an aggressive streak.)

(2) JON MOXLEY vs. BILL COLLIER

Collier made his AEW debut here. Moxley took an early advantage until Collier hit an impressive drop kick. Collier ducked his head too soon, allowing Moxley to throw him back to the mat. Moxley laid in a few stiff forearms across Collier’s face. Moxley kept Collier on the mat, pulling back on his arm, then his face. Moxley nailed Collier with a vicious knee to the face, then landed a few kicks to the chest. Collier caught a boot and hit a big forearm of his own. Moxley hit a German suplex but Collier countered a follow up. Collier hit a running clothesline – make that two. Collier hit a fall away slam. Moxley came right back with a clothesline and a piledriver for a two count. Moxley locked in a rear naked choke for the win.

WINNER: Jon Moxley in 6:30

(Moynahan’s Take: Always nice to see Moxley on Dark/Dark Elevation. I heard positive things about Collier going into this match and I walked away impressed. He didn’t get much offense, so I’m hoping we see more of him. He also reminded me a little bit of Test and/or Big Cass.)

– Cody Rhodes came out to present a special award, one of his own work belts to a child from The Boys and Girls Club of Florida. Love to see it.

(3) PENELOPE FORD (w/Kip Sabian) vs. LEILA GREY

Ford slapped Grey and threw her hard down to the mat. Ford kept the aggression on, chopping Grey in the corner. Grey came right back with a running European uppercut, then a shotgun dropkick off the ropes. Ford hit a jaw breaker, then kicked Grey right in the back of the head. Ford kept Grey in the corner, then charged in with a handspring elbow. Ford brought Grey to the apron, then came off the top with double knees to the stomach. Grey ducked a clothesline, then hit one of her own. Grey hit a Lou Thesz press. Ford picked up Grey and hit her with double knees to the stomach for the win.

WINNER: Penelope Ford in 3:30

(Moynahan’s Take: Ford looked aggressive here in an otherwise quick and uneventful match.)

(4) THE GUNN CLUB (Colten & Austin & Billy) vs. REX LAWLESS & MILK CHOCOLATE (Randy Summers & Brandon Watts)

Austin and Summers kicked things off. Austin evaded Summers, then hit him with a takeover neck breaker from behind. Billy and Lawless faced off in the middle of the ring, then battled back-and-forth. Billy took out Lawless’s legs, then hit him with a thrust kick to the face. The Gunn Club came in and took out Lawless as a team. Colten and Austin then took turns on Lawless in the corner, until Lawless hit Austin with a kick. Watts and Summers traded quick tags, keeping their offensive momentum against Austin. Austin finally tagged in Colten for the hot tag. Colten took out each opponent, hitting splashes on Summers and Watts in the corner. Lawless broke up a pin, but Billy came in and took him out. Gunn Club hit the 3:10 to Yuma on Summers for the win.

WINNERS: Gunn Club in 6:00

(Moynahan’s Take: The Gunn Club continues to make quick work of their opponents each week. A good trios match but nothing special.)

– Thunder Rosa was interviewed backstage by Alex Marvez, talking about her recent win against Britt Baker on Dynamite. Rosa thanked the fans for giving the match such high praise, then talked up her next match against Alex Gracia. Diamante interrupted, saying Rosa painted a big target on her back and now she’s stepping up to the plate to challenge Thunder Rosa.

(5) JOEY JANELA (w/Sonny Kiss) vs. CHANDLER HOPKINS

Hopkins made his AEW debut here. Janela looked impressed after being taken down early by Hopkins. The two traded counters, leading to Janela slapping Hopkins across the face. Janela drove Hopkins into the corner, then landed a few stiff chops that rang through the arena. Hopkins came back with a head scissor takeover. Janela returned the favor with a German suplex. Janela drove Hopkins into opposite corners, driving his back hard in each time. Janela drove Hopkins to the outside, then went through the ropes with a tope suicida. Hopkins then came over the top with a swan dive onto Janela. Back inside, Hopkins was thrown off the top rope by Janela. Hopkins missed a handspring kick but hit a follow up. Janela nailed Hopkins with a forearm shot. Hopkins was able to counter a move, then came off the top rope with a frog splash for a close two count. Hopkins went up top again but Janela got his knees up this time. Janela drove Hopkins hard into the mat but didn’t hook the leg and Hopkins kicked out. Janela hit the DVD then his elbow drop off the top for the win.

WINNER: Joey Janela in 8:00

(Moynahan’s Take: This was really good and Chandler Hopkins had a very impressive showing in his debut here. I recommend checking this one out.)

– Dasha Gonzalez was backstage with Angelico, asking to speak with Jack Evans in advance of his match with Jungle Boy. Evans basically said he didn’t need to prepare for the match as Angelico danced in the background.

(6) THUNDER ROSA vs. ALEX GRACIA

Rosa kept Gracia on the mat early, and the two matched one another’s moves until they hit a stalemate. Rosa nailed Gracia with a dropkick. Rosa landed a series of stiff chops to Gracia in the corner, then followed up with a kick to the lower back. Gracia reversed a whip into the corner, then took Rosa down with a hurricanrana. Rosa hit a Russian leg sweep, then nailed Gracia in the corner with a dropkick. The two traded forearms in the middle of the ring. Rosa hit the Fire Thunder Driver for the win.

WINNER: Thunder Rosa in 5:00

(Moynahan’s Take: Thunder Rosa is one of my personal favorites, but this wasn’t very enjoyable. The two just didn’t sync as well as I would have hoped or thought. Nothing terrible, just nothing special.)

– An ad for the AEW casino mobile game aired.

(7) LEYLA HIRSCH vs. VIPRESS

Hirsch took Vipress down to the mat right from the get-go. Vipress hit Hirsch in the lower rib, then focused on her left arm and shoulder. Hirsch caught Vipress’s foot and nailed her with a clothesline. Hirsch had trouble picking up Vipress with her injured arm, allowing Vipress to roll Hirsch in a pin attempt. Hirsch came back with three German suplexes. Vipress was out of it. Hirsch locked in a reverse arm breaker for the tap out.

WINNER: Leyla Hirsch in 4:00

(Moynahan’s Take: A good quick match for Hirsch, who I think needs to come out with matches like this every once in awhile.)

– A “Wrestling with the Week” ad aired.

(8) FRANKIE KAZARIAN vs. DANNY LIMELIGHT

Kazarian and Limelight worked the mat early on. Kazarian flipped Limelight over but Limelight stayed on his feet. Limelight came off the top with a head scissors takeover. Kazarian hit a spin kick to the stomach, then nailed Limelight with a clothesline, flipping him over in the process. Kazarian went back to the mat but Limelight came back at him with a frankensteiner. Kazarian hit a belly-to-back suplex. Limelight evaded Kazarian by walking the ropes, then came off the ropes with a clothesline. Limelight laid in a few front kicks on Kazarian. Kazarian hit a springboard leg drop off the middle rope. Limelight rolled to the apron to catch his breath. Kazarian tried to suplex him back in but Limelight fought his way out of it. Limelight hit a thrust kick, then came off the middle rope with a double stomp to Kazarian’s back. Kazarian locked in a cross-face chicken wing for the tap out win.

WINNER: Frankie Kazarian in 8:00

(Moynahan’s Take: A much slower match than I would have guessed going into it. Nothing wrong with that though as both wrestlers kept things very competitive throughout. Kazarian debuted a new submission move here, the dreaded cross-face chicken wing. Maybe we’ll see Bob Backlund on an upcoming show to give his formal blessing.)

(9) ETHAN PAGE vs. FUEGO DEL SOL

Page picked up Del Sol early, attempting his Ego’s Edge finisher, but Del Sol rolled out. Del Sol went for an early tornado DDT attempt, but Page threw him off. Page hit Del Sol with a backbreaker, then threw him in hard into the corner like a rag doll. Page continued to focus on Del Sol’s lower back, hitting an elbow drop, then locking in a gut wrench. Page hit another backbreaker but pulled up after two on a follow-up pin attempt. Del Sol slapped Page in the face, then hit a springboard moonsault off the middle rope. Del Sol tried for the tornado DDT again but was caught. Page hit a backbreaker across the top rope then hit the Ego’s Edge for the finish.

WINNER: Ethan Page in 5:00

(Moynahan’s Take: A solid showing for Page, basically squashing Del sol throughout. Loved the focus on the back too, a nice touch.)

– An “Outside the Ring” with Lexy Nair ad aired

(10) HIKARU SHIDA & TAY CONTI vs. JAZMINE ALLURE & TESHA PRICE

Conti and Price paired off to start the match, but Allure tagged in soon after. Conti took Allure over with a Judo throw. Shida and Conti made quick tags. Allure hit a jaw breaker on Shida, then tagged Price. Price nailed Shida with a spinning back elbow. Shida came right back with a vertical suplex. Allure and Conti each ran in. Shida and Conti hit synchronized knee strokes, then locked in submission hold on Price and Allure respectively. Conti hit Price with the DD-Tay for the win.

WINNERS: Hikaru Shida & Tay Conti in 3:00

(Moynahan’s Take: A fun, albeit quick, match. Shida and Conti worked very well together and looked in-sync throughout. It would be fun to watch them tag again down the road, although Shida should also watch out for Conti, who’s currently ranked 3rd in the Women’s Division.)

(11) JUNGLE BOY (w/Luchasaurus & Marko Stunt) vs. JACK EVANS (w/Angelico)

Jungle Boy took Evans to the mat with a headlock takeover. The two traded moves, ending with a stand-off after dual dropkick attempts. Angelico distracted Jungle Boy, which allowed Evans to nail him with a spin kick. With both on the outside, Evans rammed Jungle Boy’s face into the timekeeper’s table. Back inside, Evans continued the offense. Evans landed a flying elbow in the corner. Evans locked in an arm bar submission, but Jungle Boy reversed it into a sit-down powerbomb. Jungle Boy hit Evans with a series of chops and forearms, then took Evans down hard to the mat. Jungle Boy missed a suplex attempt, and Evans took him over the top and onto the floor. Evans came off the apron with a corkscrew kick. The two were laid out. Evans threw Jungle Boy back in, then went to the top. Jungle Boy leapt up and nailed Evans. Evans slipped out of Jungle Boy’s grip and threw Jungle Boy off the top. Jungle Boy was able to roll out of the way, then locked in a German suplex pin attempt for a two count. Evans rolled out of a second suplex attempt and hit his own powerslam for a two count. Evans came off the top rope, but Jungle Boy caught him in the Snare Trap for the tap out victory.

WINNER: Jungle Boy in 9:00

(Moynahan’s Take: Man is that Jungle Boy theme song catchy; I even have my 3-year-old son singing it with me. And yes, this match was great. Go out of your way to check it out.)

(12) LEE JOHNSON & QT MARSHALL vs. ADAM PRIEST & AARON FRYE

Marshall was very aggressive right from the jump, going in hard against Frye. Johnson tagged in and went for a quick pin attempt. Frye rammed Johnson into Marshall as he was on the top rope. Frye nailed Marshall with a running knee strike, then tagged in Priest. Priest was caught with a kick a few right hands but came right back with a suplex. Priest hit an enziguri, rocking Marshall back to his corner to tag Johnson. Johnson came in hot, but was drop kicked into Marshall, who tagged in again. Marshall hit Priest with a Diamond Cutter for the win.

WINNERS: QT Marshall & Lee Johnson in 3:30

(Moynahan’s Take: Marshall continued his aggressive streak throughout the match. He and Johnson worked well together, and surprisingly didn’t show much tension as I would have expected.)

(13) KILYNN KING vs. RYO MIZUNAMI

Mizunami and King played to the crowd. King used her size early to take Mizunami to the mat. The two charged at one another multiple times, with neither one initially giving an inch until King came out the victor. King asked for a test of strength, then mocked Mizunami for her shorter height. Mizunami came out on top of the test of strength. The two traded forearm shots. Again, Mizunami came out on top. With King in the corner, Mizunami laid in a series of chops, then played to the crowd again as we have come to expect. Mizunami landed three leg drops but was unable to get the three count. King fought back, landing her own stiff chops. Mizunami put her hands behind her back and asked for more, and King obliged. King returned the request, and Mizunami obliged with her own chops. Mizunami locked in an arm headlock submission, but King was able to reach the ropes. Mizunami charged in but was met with a spin kick. King hit a missile dropkick, then a spine buster for a very close two count. Mizunami blocked another kick and hit King with a back suplex. Mizunami hit a spear, then went to the top for a guillotine leg drop. Mizunami covered for the win.

WINNER: Ryo Mizunami in 9:00

(Moynahan’s Take: Very impressive match between King and Mizunami. I’m not sure what I went in expecting, but they certainly entertained me. The match lingered at times as they each played to the crowd, but overall better than expected.)

(14) DARK ORDER’S 5 & 10 vs. D3 & VARY MORALES

D3 landed a stiff shot on 10 to kick things off. 10 met him with an even stiffer one in return. 5 tagged in and came off the middle rope with a missile dropkick on D3. Morales tagged in. 5 kept things on the mat with an arm bar. Morales slapped him, which 5 did not take lightly. Morales slipped out of a suplex attempt but was met with a belly-to-belly. 5 missed a second jump moonsault, allowing Morales to tag in D3. 10 tagged in as well and came off the second rope with a flying clothesline. 10 hit D3 with a spinebuster. Morales distracted 10 from the apron, which allowed D3 to roll up 10 for a pin attempt. 10 locked D3 in a full nelson for the tap out win.

WINNERS: 5 & 10 in 4:30

(Moynahan’s Take: 5 and 10 looked very good here, with 10 looking like a monster against the two smaller opponents.)

– Dasha Gonzalez interviewed Ethan Page in the back after his victory tonight. Page wasn’t happy, saying AEW hasn’t rolled out the red carpet for him. He said only one person has treated him nicely since arriving here but didn’t name names.

– Bear Country was featured in this week’s Rising Star segment. They went over their backgrounds and how they came together as a team. Highlights aired on their time in AEW as well as some independent matches. They talked about how they were called in for their first AEW Dark opportunity, then brought in again from there.

(15) BEAR COUNTRY (Bear Boulder & Bear Bronson) vs. PRIVATE PARTY (Isiah Kassidy & Marq Quen w/Matt Hardy)

Bronson used his power against Kassidy during the early going of the match. Quen tagged but fared no better. Boulder tagged in and Bear Country double teamed Quen. Boulder had Quen in the corner, landing stiff looking short arm clotheslines. Quen got his feet up as Boulder charged in, then came off with a missile drop kick. Quen charged into Boulder but was met with a boot to the face. Bronson tagged back in. Kassidy ran in to try and stop the damage but was thrown outside. Kassidy nailed Bronson from the apron, allowing Quen to get the offensive advantage. Kassidy tagged back in. Private Party kept Bronson in their own corner, and Hardy snuck in a few of his own cheap shots. Private Party continued their momentum, cutting off the ring in the process. Quen tried to knock Boulder off the apron but it didn’t work so well. Boulder charged in and took out both members of Private Party. Kassidy was caught by Boulder coming off the middle rope, as was Quen jumping off the ropes (wow). Boulder threw them both over his shoulders. Hardy distracted the ref from the apron, but Marko Stunt ran out and nailed Hardy. Bear Country got distracted by Stunt’s involvement, allowing Kassidy to roll up Bronson for the three count.

WINNERS: Private Party in 8:30

– After the match, Bear Country were about to take out Marko until Jurassic Express made the save. All five men went at it until multiple refs came out to break it up.

(Moynahan’s Take: Both teams worked well together. I like the win for Private Party as well as the post-match scramble that furthers the storyline between Jurassic Express and Bear Country.)

(16) SCORPIO SKY vs. MIKE SYDAL (w/Matt Sydal)

The two hit a double shoulder tackle in the middle of the ring. Sky took Sydal down with a front face lock. Sydal cartwheeled away from Sky, then nailed him with a drop kick. Sky nailed Sydal with an enziguri, then threw him into the corner to land a few punches. Sky threw Sydal to the outside, then waited for him to make his way back in. Sky leveled Sydal with a stiff back breaker. Sydal evaded a clothesline, hit a dropkick, then landed his own enziguri. Sydal hit a thrust kick, then swept Sky’s leg out. Sydal got a two count after a standing moonsault. Sky came back with a series of three German suplexes. Sky took out Sydal’s knee, then locked in his leg submission for the tap out.

WINNER: Scorpio Sky in 7:30

– After the match, Sky kept the submission locked on until Matt Sydal ran to the ring to break things up. Ethan Page hit the ring and hammered away on Matt Sydal. Sky came back in and looked impressed with Ethan Page. The two left together

(Moynahan’s Take: An interesting development at the end of this one, with Page and Sky leaving together. I’m certainly interested to see how this develops. The match itself was very solid. Odd ending as the show just closed with no formal sign off.)

FINAL THOUGHTS: Quite the super-sized edition of AEW Dark: Elevation this week. And while it was a bit long in the tooth, so to speak, it gives me the chance to name multiple matches of the night honors. In no particular order, go out of your way to see Joey Janela/Chandler Hopkins, who shined here in his debut, Jungle Boy/Jack Evans, and Sky/Sydal. I’ll also throw a nod to the intriguing pairing of Sky and Ethan Page at the end of the night.


NOW CHECK OUT LAST WEEK’S ELEVATION REPORT: 3/22 AEW DARK ELEVATION TV REPORT: Hirsch vs. Mizunami, Cassidy vs. Nemeth, Team Taz in action, more

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