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AEW DARK TV REPORT
MARCH 30, 2021
RECORDED AT DAILY’S PLACE, JACKSONVILLE, FLA.
AIRED ON YOUTUBE.COM
REPORT BY RYAN HOWARD, PWTORCH CONTRIBUTOR
Announcers: Excalibur and Taz
Additional Commentators: Anthony Ogogo & Leva Bates
Ring Announcer: Justin Roberts
-Excalibur and Taz on the call, welcoming us to the show, giving us a rundown. Anthony Ogogo & Leva Bates joins the team during the show as well.
(1) THE BUTCHER & THE BLADE (w/H.F.O.) vs. MILK CHOCOLATE
Anthony Ogogo is on commentary to start the show, despite not being in the booth during the intro. Milk Chocolate sold the pyro of The Butcher & Blade when it went off as they were steamrolled before the bell even sounded. Butcher dropped Summers right on his head, then lawn darted him into a jump knee by Blade. Tag was made to Watts, but it’s The Blade who lit him up with chops in the corner. Watts was able to float over in the corner twice and get off a few chops until Private Party ran distraction on the ref, allowing Matt Hardy to hook Watts’ legs & hit a Hot Shot onto the ring announcers table. When the ref turned around, Hardy sold it like Watts attacked him. Butcher & Blade took turns picking apart Watts, who was able to fight back briefly, tagged Summers, who was a house of fire, cleaning house, wiping out Butcher on the apron & hit a fisherman’s buster on Blade. Milk Chocolate hit a series of kicks on Blade until Bunny ran distraction, allowing Butcher to steamroll Summers as they Drag The Lake on Watts for the victory.
WINNERS: The Butcher & The Blade in 6 minutes.
(Howard’s Analysis: All of the Hardy Family Offices got involved in this one showing that there is strength in numbers as Matt & his crew looked solid on the road to their showdown with Dark Order.)
(2) MADI WRENKOWSKI vs. JAZMIN ALLURE
Leva Bates joined us on commentary for this one to talk about her rivalry/story with Madi the past few weeks. Early arm drags & arm bar from Madi, as Allure fights back with a snap mare & snap dropkick. Leva calls Jazmin “Spunky” which Excalibur points out that’s what people call Taz. Allure regrouped on the outside, but Madi wouldn’t allow it as she leveled Allure with a lariat, heads back inside, but Jazmin turned the tables quickly with clubbing shots. Elbow drop connected, but a nonchalant cover only got Jazmin a two count, as does a lariat. Madi put the brakes on and avoided a back drop, booting Allure in the face and unloads forearms in the corner. Spinning side slam connected, which lead to a brutal Axe Kick for the victory. Leva called it The Reality Check, which Leva said Madi needs, as she hasn’t forgotten Madi smacking her with the library book a few times.
WINNERS: Madi Wrenkowski in 4 minutes.
(Howard Analysis: Quick little match, but Madi continues to look impressive as that Axe Kick is on Alicia Fox levels with how vicious it is. I assume we’re getting a rematch down the line as Madi stole a win from Leva about a month or so ago on the night of the Women’s Tournament final.)
(3) CHAOS PROJECT vs. DEAN ALEXANDER & JUSTIN LAW
Ogogo rejoins the booth for this one as coming off a loss last week to Dark Order, Luther & Serpentico attack at the bell as Luther used his partner as a lawn dart to the floor, wiping out Law. Back inside, Alexander & Law fought back against Serpentico, until Luther tried making the save, but dropped an elbow accidentally on his partner. Serpentico was sent outside and took the ref, allowing Luther to attack Law from behind, sending him into the guard rail. Chaos Project keep Law isolated as Luther hits a powerbomb, bodyslam, then Serpentico with a slingshot double stomp into the midsection. Luther literally chucked Serpentico into the gut of Law in the corner, tries a Rocket Launcher, but the pool was empty and Law finally tags Alexander for the first time to clean house. Back body drops & dropkicks were dished out as Serpentico tries a wheelbarrow, but Alexander slams him down for two. Luther is able to regain control and Chaos Project connects with Creeping Death to get back into the win column.
WINNERS: Chaos Project in 5 minutes.
(Howard’s Analysis: Commentary pointed out this was the most impressive Chaos Project has looked recently and it’s due to Luther not using Serpentico as a battering ram for nearly every move. Instead, he only did it a couple of times.)
(4) SONNY KISS (w/Joey Janela) vs ANGELICO w/Jack Evans
Joey Janela, complete with an early 90s Sting hat, ran to commentary to sing/screech a bit, which baffled Taz, Excalibur & Ogogo as Taz said it’s impressive how Excalibur can do impressions. Both men take turns working wrist locks as Sonny picked the ankle as Angelico bailed to the ropes. They lock up and Angelico slaps on a standing straightjacket into a headlock, Sonny is able to turn the tables, but Jack Evans gets in a cheap shot as Janela ran him off to the opposite side of the ring. Angelico locks on a knee bar/leg lock combo, but releases it just to stomp on the back. Sonny gets to his feet, connected with a roaring elbow, looked for the splits kick off a handstand, but Angelico caught the leg into a standing Crab before connecting with a PK for 2. Sonny floated over a back suplex, hit a step up hurricanrana, dropsault, then back handspring elbow leading to a running bulldog that planted Angelico on his head for a near fall. Kiss tried for a springboard off the second rope, but Angelico cut him off, slapped on the Navarro Death Roll for the submission win.
WINNERS: Angelico in 7 minutes.
(Howard’s Analysis: A good back a forth match with some solid mat wrestling and counters. I’m happy they kept the interference to a minimum as I could see this leading to a tag match potentially soon.)
-Brief word backstage from Max Caster, running down Dark Order and Alex Reynolds, saying he can beat any member of Dark Order, even Adam Page, with one hand tied behind his back.
(5) EVIL UNO, STU GRAYSON & COLT CABANA vs. D3, VARY MORALES & BILL COLLIER
I assume this was shot before John Silver injured his shoulder as he’s out there for the Dark Order entrance revving up the muscle pose. Cabana is laying down on the ramp as a shout out to -1 as Uno & D3 begin with a test of strength, which Uno wins with a back heel trip. Nice series of back & forth counters until Uno gets a Manhattan Drop and La Magistral for a near fall. D3 covers up to avoid the right hand, but Uno puts on the brakes and gets the eye poke. Tag made to Collier, who looked impressive last night on Elevation against Jon Moxley, as he launched Uno across the ring with a shoulder tackle. Colt jumps in and poses at Collier as Taz drops a Reg Park reference. Stu gets the tag, tried a Tornado DDT out the corner, but Collier dead lifted Grayson up into a suplex. Collier hit a boot on Stu, who popped right up into a standing hurricanrana as Morales tags in, as does Cabana, with Vary hitting a flying snap mare and springboard arm drag off the ropes, but as he tried a victory roll, Cabana just dropped him face first into the Dark Order corner. Quick tags being made by Uno, Stu & Colt as Cabana hits a big time body slam, but missed the follow up Flying Apple in the corner. Slugfest ensues with Collier & Colt as Collier powers him into his team’s corner, isolating Cabana. Vary hit the ropes, but ran right into the Flying Apple as Stu Grayson tags in, connecting with boots & chops aplenty, planting big Collier with a Uranage. Stu looked for Nightfall, but Collier fought free, but ran into an assisted Flatliner by Uno, then Morales was dropped with an assisted pop up powerbomb. Colt tags in as he drops D3 with the Chicago Skyline, which D3 took a hard landing for the victory.
WINNERS: Dark Order in 7 minutes and 30 seconds.
(Howard’s Analysis: This has been the most offense opponents have gotten on Uno, Stu & Cabana in recent weeks and it led to a solid showcase for Dark Order. The Skyline Cabana hit was pretty devastating, too. I’m hoping all these guys get some time on Dynamite soon, as I assume a match with Matt Hardy’s crew is imminent.)
(6) JURASSIC EXPRESS (w/Jungle Boy) vs. ADAM PRIEST & KC NAVARRO
Taz got the first two words right singing along to Tarzan Boy, by the end of the year he’ll get it I’m sure. Excalibur points out they get charged twice when Taz sings along. Navarro mocks Marko’s size, so Marko stomps the leg and pops him with a stiff enziguri. Priest tags in and Marko drops an elbow off the second rope for a two count. Luchasaurus tags in as Priest & Navarro both stop in their tracks on who will go after the dinosaur, as they both charge and get planted with a double choke slam for the quick win.
WINNERS: Jurassic Express in 1 minute and 30 seconds.
(Howard’s Analysis: Obviously the highlight of this match was Taz singing along to Tarzan Boy, as this match was very quick and Luchasaurus did one move leading to the win. We need more Taz singing during Luchasaurus & Marko matches.)
(7) DIAMANTE vs. VIPRESS
Last night on Elevation, Diamante had some words with Thunder Rosa, so this is a showcase for her here, but Vipress ducks an early wild right into a Northern Lights for a quick 2. Vipress picks the leg and stomps on the face of Diamante, who is sent to the corner, leaps up and mule kicks Vipress right in the face before hitting a charging dropkick for a near fall. Trash talk by Diamante leads to Vipress sending her to the floor. Vipress tried a kick, but Diamante caught it, swung Vipress down onto the mat, slamming her into the guard rail before heading inside for a 2 count. Vipress counters the wheelbarrow, but Diamante lands on her feet and leveled her opponent with a spinning lariat, hits a few more clotheslines, then applied a straight jacket submission with the body scissors for the victory.
WINNER: Diamante in 3 minutes.
(Howard’s Analysis: To be perfectly honest, Vipress came off looking more impressive than Diamante in this one, which I know wasn’t the point. I did like the submission finish, but it was Vipress who got off more in the way of offense in this short match. It wasn’t the dominant victory I was assuming we’d get from Diamante.)
(8) BRIAN CAGE, RICKY STARKS & POWERHOUSE HOBBS w/Hook vs. JAKE ST. PATRICK, SAGE SCOTT & CHANDLER HOPKINS
Taz points out that Team Taz is back on the same page as Excalibur questions who would win in a fight, Cage or Starks, which Taz refuses to answer. Starks started with St. Patrick and got the advantage before he backed Jake into his corner, could’ve easily tagged Cage, but opted for Hobbs, who manhandles St. Patrick. Hobbs ties him up in the Tree of Woe (which Excalibur points out could be The Tree of Joey Lawrence “Tree of Whoa”) as Hobbs allows St. Patrick to tag in Hopkins and proceeds to get absolutely flattened by the Powerhouse. Hopkins is sent to the floor, where Hook lays him out with a suplex before Hobbs goes to tag in Cage, but Starks steals the tag. Ricky wipes out everyone, signals for the Roshambo, but Cage gets the blind tag, hits the Drill Claw to snag the victory for his team. Starks was annoyed at first, but he plays it off, smiling and giving the thumbs up.
WINNERS: Brian Cage, Ricky Starks & Powerhouse Hobbs in 5 minutes.
(Howard’s Analysis: This accomplished everything they needed to in 5 minutes. Team Taz demolished their opponents all while having dissension at the same time. I like the slow build they’re doing with Starks & Cage with Hobbs almost on the outside looking in for the time being. You know ultimately he’ll be forced to decide who to side with soon.
(9) BIG SWOLE, RED VELVET & KILYNN KING vs. ASHLEY VOX, DELMI EXO & VERTVIXEN
Fresh off her strong performance last night on Elevation against Ryo Mizunami, Kiylinn King danced to the ring with Swole & Velvet and got off one quick take down on Vox before Swole & Exo tags in. Exo is the sister of Vox as Swole got a cravat & shoulder tackle before slapping on a headlock, then tagged Velvet. Exo sort of trips jumping over Velvet, which messed up whatever double team Velvet & Swole were looking for as Exo fought back and hit a pretty sloppy bodyslam on Velvet as Vox quickly tags in for a running corner uppercut. She tags her sister right back in, which leads to a malfunction at the junction with Velvet avoiding the double team, tagging in King, as Exo runs to the floor to sucker King into chasing her, leading to Vertvixen hitting a lariat, allowing King to be isolated. Forearm battle ensues between King & Vertvixen and ends in both ladies hitting high head kicks at the same time for the double down. King makes the tag first as Swole cleans house, clobbering Vox with a headbutt, then dropped Exo right on her head with a corner Uranage. Swole looks to put away Vox, but Vertvixen comes in from nowhere for a knee to Swole’s face. The sisters Vox & Exo hit double dives on King & Velvet, then Vertvixen hits a Tope Suicida wiping everyone out. Back inside, Exo hit an Exploder Suplex on Swole, as the sisters try an assisted senton out the corner, but Swole got her knees up. Tag made to Velvet, who cleaned house, King jumped in and hit a kick, as did Swole, which led to the Chef’s Kiss by Velvet to get her team the win. Post match, Velvet and her team dance until Jade Cargill makes her way to the ramp and Bryce Remsberg has to hold her back while Swole & King hold back Velvet.
WINNERS: Big Swole, Red Velvet & Kilynn King in 8 minutes.
(Howard’s Analysis: Early on in the match, I feared it would fall apart due to the miscommunication with Exo, but I will give all the ladies credit, they busted their butts in this one and turned it around into a pretty fun chaotic six person tag. Kilynn King continues to impress as I hope they keep slowly building her on Dark and Elevation.)
(10) MICHAEL NAKAZAWA vs. MIKE MAGNUM
Nakazawa is looking for his first win since July of last year as he’s wrestling not only with a headset on, but also his lanyard. Despite the bell ringing, Nakazawa is taking a call on the headset, so Magnum attacks, but Nakazawa gets “areola controlla” as Excalibur calls it, which is code for purple nurple. He crotches Magnum on the ropes, then drags him across the ropes, which Taz calls “The Yam Bag Scratcheroonie”. I have no idea what I’m typing at this point as Nakazawa chokes out Magnum with his lanyard until referee Mike Posey wrestles it away from him. Magnum connected with a DDT, then neckbreaker for a near fall. Magnum charges in the corner, but Nakazawa pulls the ref in front of him, allowing him to smack Magnum with his laptop, then hit a Tombstone Driver for the 3 count. He got the pin using, I’ll just say, the position that Kenny Omega yelled at Don Callis to do to him a few weeks back on Dynamite. If you know, you know.
WINNER: Michael Nakazawa in 4 minutes.
(Howard’s Analysis: This match went 4 minutes too long. I didn’t care for this at all. I get Nakazawa is the comedy guy, but him getting wins in his new heel administrator character is something I don’t care to see anymore on Dark. We did hear Taz say “Yam Bag Scratcheroonie” so there’s that.)
(11) MIRO & KIP SABIAN w/Penelope Ford vs. BARON BLACK & JOHN SKYLER
Interesting note, this is Baron Black’s 14th match this year with AEW and he leads the company with most matches in 2021. Of course he’s yet to get his first victory, but I thought that was interesting regardless. Before the bell, Miro gives Baron a chance to leave and go backstage, but Baron doesn’t back down, so Miro just annihilates him, sending Baron clear over the guard rail outside. Miro chases down Skyler as bell sounds and it’s nothing but Miro demolishing him as Kip is just talking to his wife, with his back to the ring, not even taking his jacket off. Miro is calling out Charles Taylor as he brutalizes Skyler with a jump kick to the face, then applies Game Over for the submission. Miro goes right to the camera and tells Chuck & Orange he is going to eat their organs and for people to stop wasting his time.
WINNERS: Miro & Kip Sabian in 2 minutes & 30 seconds.
(Howard’s Analysis: This was a handicap match as Kip did nothing, but he didn’t have to. Miro destroyed both men and I assume this is in Kips future after I predict he loses the match on Dynamite and Miro snaps on his friend.)
(12) MAX CASTER (w/Anthony Bowens) vs ALEX REYNOLDS (w/John Silver)
Caster did a rap to the ring taking a shot at QT Marshall’s bald spot, then just stopped mid rap to tell Reynolds “I hate you.” I don’t know if he just forgot the rest of the rap, but it oddly worked for me. It’s nice to see Anthony Bowens back with his partner as he & Silver are jaw jacking early on the floor. Early uppercuts connect by Reynolds as he hung up Caster in the ropes and hits a running boot onto the apron. Reynolds goes up top and hits a diving cross body and I think hurt his own wrist in the process off the impact. Reynolds is holding the arm, which allows Caster to zone in on it, stomping on the bad arm. Caster hit a hammerlock slam for a near fall as Reynolds mounts his comeback, but is doing it with one arm as Caster quickly stops the momentum with a neck breaker, applying a modified key lock, but Reynolds got the ropes. Caster keeps targeting the arm, but the Dark Order member fought back with some leaping back elbows using the good arm. Cravat style neckbreaker hits as Reynolds got a close two count. Alex tried a Fisherman’s Suplex, but Caster spun out, tried to go back to the key lock, as Reynolds countered into a near fall for 2. Both men do a series of roll ups and counters before Reynolds hit a pop up knee to the face. Reynolds went for the cover, but the ref didn’t make the count right away, leading to Bowens to put his partner’s foot on the ropes. Reynolds went for the moonsault, missed as Bowens took the ref, Caster tried for the boombox shot, but John Silver stopped it. As the ref turned and saw him with the boombox, this allowed Caster to get the chain from Bowens and leveled Reynolds in the face, then connected with the Mic Drop elbow off the top for the win.
WINNER: Max Caster in 8 minutes.
(Howard’s Analysis: This was a completely different style of match I assumed we would get and I liked it quite a bit. I liked how Reynolds sold the wrist early and that was the story for a majority of the match from there on out. Caster winning via shenanigans means we’ll get more of this pairing down the line, perhaps once Bowens is cleared to wrestle. A tag match with The Acclaimed against Reynolds & Silver would be fun.)
FINAL THOUGHTS: I always enjoy Dark more when it’s not crammed with 2 hours plus worth of squashes. Overall, we got some fun matches tonight. Some much more competitive than I thought they’d be when I read the card. The match of the night for me would probably be the main event with the Dark Order six-man being second. The lowlight was obviously the Nakazawa match. For the second night in a row, Kilynn King is one of the MVPs of the show. She keeps getting better and is constantly improving. Overall pretty good episode that wrapped up in 90 minutes.
NOW CHECK OUT LAST WEEK’S AEW DARK REPORT: 3/23 AEW DARK TV REPORT: Cage vs. Cutler, SCU vs. Nelson & Isaacs, Jack Evans vs. Dante Martin, more