SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
AEW DARK TV REPORT
JULY 6, 2022
RECORDED AT UNIVERSAL STUDIOS, ORLANDO, FLORIDA
AIRED ON YOUTUBE.COM
REPORT BY RYAN HOWARD, PWTORCH CONTRIBUTOR
AEW Dark Announcers: Excalibur, Caprice Coleman, and Taz
Ring Announcer: Dasha Gonzalez
-Excalibur and Taz on the call, welcoming us to the show.
(1) LEE MORIARTY vs. LEE RUFFIN
Ruffin used his speed to spring all over the ring to avoid the grasp of Moriarty to start, as Ruffin worked a headlock takedown. Moriarty was able to fight back and zone in on the arm, punting it out from Ruffin. Moriarty blocked a hip toss into a nice arm bar, until Ruffin backed Moriarty in the corner and unleashed strikes. Moriarty quickly went to the arm again and lit up Ruffin with chops. Ruffin fought out of a reverse waist lock, avoided another punt kick to the arm and hit an enziguri to create some distance. A back breaker into a neck breaker from Ruffin led to a forearm battle. Moriarty won that off a suplex throw and discus lariat for a close two. Moriarty sort of played up boos from the crowd, who are behind Ruffin, who hit a fantastic bounce back into a German suplex. Ruffin connected with a tope suicida, but as he tried to slingshot back inside, his bad arm gave way and Ruffin ran right into a forearm. Moriarty hit a violent Flatliner for the win.
WINNER: Lee Moriarty in 8:30
(Howard’s Analysis: This was a very good back and forth opener to kick off the show with both men looking impressive. We were told by Excalibur that if Tully Blanchard’s Gates of Agony defeat Moriarty & Jonathan Gresham this week on Rampage, then one of the Gates of Agony will get a ROH World Title shot against Gresham at a later date. One would assume that member would be Brian Cage if Tully’s team is successful. On the other hand, commentary was really putting it over that if Gresham & Moriarty are successful that Moriarty gets that ROH Title shot. So long as we see more Jonathan Gresham on my TV.)
(2) BEAR COUNTRY (Boulder & Bronson) vs. ADRIAN ALANIS & LIAM GRAY
Taz said the one thing Boulder & Bronson are missing is a baby bear, a cub. Excalibur suggests Bear Bambino, which Taz agrees with. As this is going on, poor Alanis is bouncing off Boulder like a ball until Bronson & Gray tag in. Bronson hit a running senton and controlled until he got his leg chop blocked to allow Gray & Alanis to gain control. After being isolated for a brief time, Bronson sat down on the chest of Gray, who foolishly went for a sunset flip. Boulder made the hot tag and cleaned house with a big time shoulder tackle. With Gray in a powerbomb position, Boulder caught Alanis in a cross body and did a powerbomb splash combo. With his partner backpacked on him, Bear Country hit a running corner cannonball for the victory. Excalibur said this could be called Build a Bear Workshop, which popped Taz.
WINNERS: Bear Country in 5:30
(Howard Analysis: Taz suggesting a little baby bear is now all I want for Bear Country and will be disappointed if that never happens. Taz loves Seinfeld references, so I imagine sort of a Kramer & Mickey pairing.)
(3) AQA vs. AVERY BREAUX
Breaux tried to get an early suplex, but AQA rolled her up for two with a small package. A cross body out of the corner got AQA another near fall, which she followed up with a corner forearm, but Breaux pulled her face first into the corner. Following Bear Country’s footsteps of the last match, Breaux hit a running corner cannonball for a near fall. Bear Breaux was officially born off the brilliance of our commentary duo. AQA fought free out of the corner with a series of running forearms and sling blade. Breaux ducked a roundhouse kick, ate an enzugiri and flipping neckbreaker for the victory.
WINNER: AQA in 4:00
(Howard’s Analysis: This match felt a little clunky in spots, but I am all for AQA getting ring time on Dark more often. She gets a good reaction, has a great look, getting more experience on this show is perfect and hopefully continues.)
(4) JOSH WOODS vs. BARRETT BROWN
Tony Nese & Mark Sterling sat ringside to watch this match. Brown tried to get an early cover, but Woods easily took him down. Both men traded standing switches until Woods picked the leg and punted Brown in the chest. Woods clocked Brown to the floor with a charging kick and immediately tossed him back inside. Woods missed a pump kick and Brown hit a low dropkick. Woods ducked a clothesline; hit a judo throw and wrist lock for the quick submission. Nese & Sterling applauded Woods before they headed backstage.
WINNER: Josh Woods in 2:30
(Howard’s Analysis: Pretty quick and dominating performance from Woods, who will either wrestle or team with Tony Nese soon one would assume. I have no idea where they’re going with this, but I wouldn’t mind seeing either happening.)
(5) SONNY KISS vs. LAMAR DIGGS
Sonny gave up quite the size advantage in this one, as Diggs is well over 300 pounds. Sonny tried a monkey flip and was bealed clear across the ring by Diggs, who missed a follow up clothesline. Sonny did a handspring forearm; Diggs caught Sonny in his grasps and hit a fall away slam. Diggs tried a stalling vertical suplex, Sonny wiggled free into a sunset flip, but it was a ruse, as Diggs missed the sit down splash. Sonny hit a series of kicks and tilt a whirl into a cross face for the submission.
WINNER: Sonny Kiss in 2:30
(Howard’s Analysis: Sonny used speed over size in this one to get a quick and impressive win. Once Diggs was taken down, all it took was that cross face and it was all she wrote.)
(6) FUEGO DEL SOL vs. AARON SOLO (w/QT Marshall)
Fuego missed his Tornado DDT early, as he was distracted by QT and ate a Solo dropkick through the ropes. Back inside, Solo picked apart Fuego until Fuego got a tilt a whirl school boy for two. A hip toss into the corner sent Fuego immediately put Solo back in control. Fuego hit a jawbreaker to get free of a sleeper, connected with a series of kicks and leaping neck breaker. Solo rolled outside and was immediately hit with a springing moonsault from the inside to the floor. Back inside, Fuego did a step in head scissors and Tornado DDT into a submission. QT took the ref just as Solo tapped out. As Fuego turned around, he ate a Solo corkscrew kick and spinning suplex for two. Solo went for the Pedigree, but Fuego countered into a roll up pin for the three.
WINNER: Fuego Del Sol in 5:30
(Howard’s Analysis: Slow first half of this one, but it picked up as it went on. After turning down their invitation to join last week, Fuego gets one over on The Factory tonight. I assume this story isn’t over just yet and QT will get his revenge soon.)
(7) JAY LETHAL & SATNAM SINGH (w/Sonjay Dutt) vs. GUS DE LA VEGA & DARIAN BENGSTON
Lethal & Bengston started things off with Lethal getting a hip toss into a low dropkick. Lethal wanted De La Vega to tag in, which he did and quickly picked Lethal’s ankle. Lethal tried to drag De La Vega to his corner to the giant, but De La Vega bailed wisely. Lethal used his speed to outsmart De La Vega, who avoided the first dropkick, but not the second try. Blind tag from Bengston, as he & De La Vega hit a dropkick leg sweep combo for two. Lethal fought free, tagged the monster and it was all academic from there and Bengston & De La Vega knew it. Singh chucked both De La Vega to the floor and Lethal wiped him out with a dive. Bengston was turned inside out with a big boot and planted with a powerbomb for the win.
WINNERS: Jay Lethal & Satnam Singh in 4:00
(Howard’s Analysis: Singh was in for 30 seconds and it was perfect. Once Lethal made the tag, it was all over. After this Samoa Joe feud is over with Lethal, I don’t know what you do with Singh, but am curious to see where they go. Regardless, Joe vs. Lethal should be fantastic when it happens. Until then, Lethal & Singh destroying dudes is just fun to watch.)
(8) JOHN SILVER & ALEX REYNOLDS & EVIL UNO & 10 vs. PETER AVALON & RYAN NEMETH & CEZAR BONONI & JD DRAKE
This match has been built for a few weeks with the Wingmen & Dark Order being represented in full strength here tonight. Evil Uno & the self proclaimed King of Dark Ryan Nemeth started things off with Uno dropping Nemeth on the yam bag with an atomic drop. After mocking the hip swivel, 10 tagged in and hit an overhead belly to belly that brought in Avalon. Reynolds & 10 hit a double shoulder block until Avalon hit a jawbreaker and tagged Drake. Reynolds was sent to the floor, as Bononi hit a few cheap shots to get control for his team. Reynolds remained isolated for a few minutes, with the most notable thing happening being Taz randomly getting super hot at referee Bryce. Nemeth went for a back drop and Reynolds hit a double stomp to the neck. Silver made a hot tag, cleaned house with a big German suplex on JD Drake and brainbuster on Avalon for two. Uno made the tag, but missed a swanton bomb. Bononi worked for and hit a hoss toss on Uno, Drake hit a cannonball, Nemeth with a neck breaker and Avalon with a frog splash for a close two. Avalon was backdropped to the floor by 10, was caught by his teammates, but Reynolds was backdropped by 10 and wiped everyone out. Avalon was tossed back inside, hit with Something Evil by Evil Uno, Wombo Combo from Reynolds & Silver, while 10 put Avalon away with a discus lariat for three.
WINNERS: John Silver, Alex Reynolds, Evil Uno & 10 in 7:30
(Howard’s Analysis: This was your party match of the night and it was pretty action packed once Reynolds was able to make that hot tag to his partner. Each team got to hit their big series of moves, but in the end, the Dark Order boys were too much for The Wingmen. I have absolutely no idea what they are going to do with the Dark Order now that they’re down to four guys. Each has their unique quality, but they need an overhaul or something, because I don’t see them doing much as a team outside of being on Dark & Elevation a bunch. Perhaps a new leader could give this group a shot in the arm they need? I guess only time will tell, but this was a solid main event here tonight.)
FINAL THOUGHTS: Pretty standard episode tonight with the main event wrapping up this feud that went on a couple weeks and highlighted Moriarty in the opener, who will be on Rampage this week. I’d give my Match of the Night to the opener in fact, as Moriarty & Ruffin put on a strong back and forth match. The main event was fun, Lethal & Singh racked up another win, Fuego got one over on The Factory, while Bear Country, AQA & Sonny Kiss all got in the win column. They seem to be building something with Josh Woods & Tony Nese, but we’ll have to wait and see where that goes.