AEW COLLISION RESULTS (7/22): House of Black vs. The Acclaimed & Billy Gunn, Skye Blue vs. Taya Valkrie, Jay & Juice vs. Action Andretti & Darius Martin

By Wade Keller, PWTorch editor


JULY 22, 2023

Commentators: Ian Riccaboni, Nigel McGuinness

Ring Announcer: Dasha Gonzalez


-Soundbites aired with The Acclaimed & Billy Gunn, Action Andretti & Darius Martin, and Bullet Club Gold (including a plug for their new shirts). Then they cut to the parking lot where Ricky Starks drove up with the Owen Hart belt. He said tonight they’re celebrating with absolute style.

-The AEW Collision opening to Elton John’s “Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting.”

-Ian Riccaboni introduced the show. He said they were at the home of the New Jersey Devils.

-Tony Schiavone stood mid-ring and said they were opening with a celebration. He introduced “Absolute” Ricky Starks who came out and soaked up an extended pyro session as he posed on the ring apron. A “Ricky! Ricky!” chant broke out. Schiavone said his win wasn’t without controversy because he held the rope to win. Fans chanted, “You deserve it!” He said he’s never agreed with a city more than tonight. He said he wanted to let everyone know what’s in the bag he carried out. He said nothing, he just wanted to show off the designer bag he bought after winning the tournament. He said in 20 years, people are going to ask how many wins he has, not how he won. He said anyone else would have done the same thing. He said he won by any means necessary. “Don’t talk to me about what’s right and wrong,” he said. “Talk to me about how stylish I am, about how sexy I am.”

Schiavone brought up the disrespectful way he took the trophy from Jushin Liger. He said no disrespect was meant and called him a legend. He quickly moved to talking about how people compare him to others. “I am me,” he said. He said people say he should be a Pillar, but doesn’t want that because he stands on his own. He asked how many Owen Hart Tournaments those Pillars have won. Out walked C.M. Punk to boos. He was wearing a “CMFTR” t-shirt.

Punk said people assumed he’d be screaming mad, but he’s not. He said if anything, he’s actually kind of proud of Starks. More boos. He said he can’t stand there and say he’s never cheated at anything in his life and he can’t stand in New Jersey and pretend they haven’t cheated, either. He took a dig at the New Jersey Devils NHL team and said if they had the wherewithal of Starks, they’d have made it out of the first round. Punk asked Starks if he can live with the knowledge he can’t beat him without cheating. He patted him on the shoulder and left the ring. Starks said his bag is as empty as the bag Punk’s been carrying around. Punk marched back to the ring and walked up to Starks. A “C.M. Punk!” rang out.

Punk asked if Starks wanted a shot at what’s in the bag. He asked if he’s like “little Max” and just doesn’t want him to have it. Fans “ooh’d.” He said he is the real champion. Christian Cage and Luchasaurus then walked out and interrupted.

Christian said they’re contractually obligated to appear, but it’s taking longer than he wants because he didn’t want to be in New Jersey any longer than necessary. He said there’s a reason they’re called Dirty Jersey. He told them shut their mouths while he conducted business. “What kind of man carries around a championship he didn’t win?” he said. Punk laughed. Christian said they are the faces of TNT now and forever. Darby Allin then marched out and yanked the mic out of Christian’s hand.

He entered the ring and told Ricky that he hates the term Pillars. He said it’s not just four people who hold up the company. He said they all do, including “my good friend, C.M. Punk.” He said at All Out, he plans to become the new face of TNT and put respect back on that title. He said when he looks at Luchasaurus, all he sees is someone who took too many psychedelics and thinks he’s a dinosaur now. He challenged Luchasaurus & Starks to face him and Punk. He asked Christian if he even wrestles anymore. Schiavone said Tony Khan just said the match is official tonight, but it can be either Christian or Luchasaurus who teams with Starks.

(Keller’s Analysis: Some of that felt kind of random, but it set up a fresh tag team match later where Starks can further establish his new heel approach. Darby siding with Punk and calling him his good friend is a smart strategy of the goal is for Punk to be cheered since fans pretty universally cheer Darby. Christian, unlike the cool Starks, is the perfect heel to put opposite of Punk to also nudge fans into cheering Punk. Christian’s excuse for coming out when he did so he could escape New Jersey worked well to justify why he involved in the promo.)

-They went to Riccaboni and Nigel McGuiness at ringside who threw to a scene from earlier. Andrade El Idolo arrived at the arena, but security guys told him management doesn’t want him in the building after what happened last week. They escorted him out. Nigel said they want a clean winner in the Trios match later involving The House of Black. Nigel and Ian then hyped the other scheduled matches. [c/ss]


Nigel called last week’s Jay & Juice vs. FTR match one of the greatest tag matches ever. The Gunns riled up the crowd at ringside. The bell rang 22 minutes into the hour. Juice slammed Andretti off the ring apron with an inverted DDT at ringside. The Gunns taunted Andretti. Fans were chanting, “Daddy doesn’t love you!” Darius confronted the heels. Jay threw him into the barricade. They cut to a split-screen break. [c/ss]

The heels controlled the action during the break. Back from the break, Darius tagged in and went to work on White including a top rope crossbody for a near fall at 8:00. Andretti springboard-backflipped onto Jay and Juice at ringside. Juice interfered when Andretti climbed the top rope. He then tagged in officially and crashed into Andretti who was hanging upside down in the corner. Juice landed a left hand to Andretti’s jaw as Jay held him. Juice landed a pendulum DDT next. Jay then finished Andretti with his Blade Runner finisher, although the director inexplicably cut away to Juice and Andretti at ringside and completely missed it. They replayed the finisher right afterward.

WINNERS: Jay & Juice in 11:00.

-After the match, the Gunns joined in on a post-match attack on Andretti and Darius. Then they celebrated together as their music played.

-Riccaboni and Nigel hyped upcoming matches.

(Keller’s Analysis: They’re doing a much job than has been typical of Dynamite over the years promoting what’s coming up later with graphics and mentions.) [c]

-Ian narrated clips from the ROH Death Before Dishonor PPV match between Athena and Willow Nightingale for the ROH Title. Ian said it was “the greatest women’s confrontation” he’s ever seen in ROH. Nigel congratulated Nightingale for the fight she put forth.


Comoroto attacked Miro from behind during Miro’s ring entrance. He beat him up briefly at ringside and threw him into the ring. The ref promptly called for the bell (rewarding the heel’s illegal pre-match attack, which is really dumb). The bell rang 39 minutes into the hour. Miro took a beating for another minute or so, but seemed to just be getting angrier. He then made a comeback, landed his signature kick, got all fired up as the crowd cheered, and then applied the Game Over submission hold for the win.

WINNER: Miro in 2:00.

(Keller’s Analysis: These dominant wins are nice, but it’s time for him to get involved in an actual rivalry of some kind with someone on the top half of the roster.)

-A video package aired on “the legacy of FTR.” Ian said they’d hear from them live later.

-The House of Black’s ring entrance took place. Then they cut to a partial split-screen break. [c/pss]

(3) HOUSE OF BLACK (Malakai Black & Buddy Matthews & Brody King) vs. THE ACCLAIMED (Max Caster & Anthony Bowens) & BILLY GUNN – Trios Title match

The Acclaimed and Gunn came out next. Max Caster did a rap including a reference to drugs on the floor of the White House. He said said the reception for House of Black is lukewarm, but their name is “my favorite category on YouPorn.” Buddy Matthews jumped Caster before he finished with a running knee. Everyone brawled at ringside. The bell rang 49 minutes into the hour. At 4:00 Caster hot-tagged in Gunn. He rallied until Brody caught him with a hard clothesline. Black then landed his Black Mass spinning hook kick for the win.

WINNERS: House of Black in 5:00.

(Keller’s Analysis: This certainly could have gone longer and held the crowd’s attention.)

-After the match, as the Acclaimed were at ringside recovering, Black caressed Billy’s head in some sort of message. Gunn began unlacing his boots. He seemed emotional as he did it. They cut to Bowens and Caster watching with concern. Fans chanted, “You still got it!” Billy shook his head and cried. (We all learned how long it takes to unlace a wrestling boot!) He put the boots in the middle of the ring and then left in his socks. He pushed past The Acclaimed and indicated he was too emotional to address their questions. The Acclaimed stayed at ringside. Nigel said he’s stunned. He said that’s generally the sign that the wrestler is retiring from wrestling.

(Keller’s Analysis: I hope if Gunn is actually retiring, the suddenness of it isn’t an indication of a physical issue requiring it. It seems they could have gotten more out of his retirement with some sort of stipulation, but this coming out of nowhere packed an emotional punch, especially given how over he is.)

-They went to Ian and Nigel at ringside who asked if this is the actual end of a 30+ year career. He threw to highlights from Rampage of the Royal Rampage match, which Darby won.

-Schiavone stood mid-ring and introduced FTR, who then made their entrance to their music.



-When they entered the ring, Schiavone characterized their match last week as one of the best tag team matches ever. He asked them about facing MJF & Adam Cole next week. Cash asked the crowd how they’re doing. He then listed past opponents. When he got to The Young Bucks, boos rang out briefly. He said they have unfinished business with several teams, but first they have MJF & Cole. Cash said he understands fans kind of like MJF & Cole as a team now. Fans cheered. He asked if they trust MJF. He looked at the camera and asked Cole if he trusts MJF. He said during their time in the Pinnacle they learned not to trust MJF. He said they won’t beat FTR “bay-bay” next week.

Dax said when he was 14 or 15 years old, his dad told him to go get a job. Fans booed. “I booed too,” Dax said with a chuckle. He talked about over-privileged kids who would make fun of them. He said he always wanted to crack them across the nose, and that reminds him of the MJF situation. He said they take the tag titles as a joke and the match as a joke. He said for him, the comedy skits and the dance break offends him. Some fans chanted “Double clothesline!” Dax acknowledged it, and then got back on track. He talked about all of his injuries over the years on his path to making FTR the greatest team in pro wrestling. He said next week in Hartford, Conn., there won’t be a dance break or comedy because he’ll treat them like he should’ve treated those kids when he was a teenager. He said they’re dishing out an ass kicking. “Top guys, out,” he said.

(Keller’s Analysis: That was a nice promo from FTR. It also was illustrative of the perils of having a popular team matched against opponents who are not clear-cut heels. His promo getting a positive crowd reaction was kind of predicated on fans finding the dance off and comedy skits off-putting, but fans are liking them, so it he faced a (predictable) headwind. But his stance was on-brand for FTR.) [c]

-Brief clips aired of Blood & Guts.


The bell rang 12 minutes into the hour. Valkyrie shoved Skye down after a mid-ring staredown. She went on the attack. They cut to a split-screen break at 15:00 with Valkyrie still in control. [c/ss]

Sky made a comeback after the break. Valkyrie soon thwarted the comeback and landed her finisher for the win. Nigel said she looks ready to challenge for another title.

WINNER: Valkyrie in 9:00.

-Valkyrie addressed the crowd after the match. “Oh my gosh, New Jersey,” she said. “You’re worse than I thought.” She said things hadn’t been going her way lately, but tonight against “one of your home-grown little sweethearts, I got the victory.” She said Britt Baker also has a victory lately. She said Britt’s win was against “an extra, someone not on our level.” She challenged Baker to a match on Dynamite this Wednesday. “Come play with me, Britt,” she said.

(Keller’s Analysis: The brand separation feels softer than usual this episode with a match for Dynamite being set up on Collision rather than a match for next week’s Collision.)

-A vignette aired showing A.R. Fox highspots. Ian plugged Dynamite next week: Orange Cassidy vs. Fox for the International Title, Swerve Strickland vs. Darby Allin, Baker vs. Valkyrie, Pac vs. Gravity, and Jon Moxley & Claudio vs. Lucha Bros. vs. Best Friends. Also, a promo with Cole and MJF. They shifted to plugging next week’s Collision featuring MJF & Cole challenging FTR for the titles, Andrade vs. Matthews in a ladder match, and Juice & The Gunns vs. El Hijo del Vikingo & Action Andretti & Darius Martin. [c]


All four ring entrances took place separately. Fans chanted “C.M. Punk!” as he made his entrance last. The bell rang 33 minutes into the hour. Christian and Starks argued over who would start the match. Starks got frustrated and finally entered. Punk came up behind Starks and rolled him up for a near fall. He set up a Go To Sleep, but Starks fought out of it. A loud “C.M. Punk!” chant rang out mixed with boos that got louder the longer the chant went. Starks surprised Christian with a tag on his wrist. Punk yanked Christian into the ring and threw him from one turnbuckle to another.

Punk then tagged in Darby at 2:00. Darby worked over Christian’s arm and then tagged Punk back in to a mixed response. He tagged Darby back in. He rolled up Christian for a near fall. Christian crawled over to try to tag Starks, but Starks wasn’t interested. Fans enjoyed that. Punk then tried to lift Christian for a GTS, but Christain elbowed out and then Starks did tag in.

Fans started chanting “Ab-s0-lute!” Punk dropped Starks onto Christian in a bit of a weird sequence after a failed double-team move by Starks and Christian. (Were they going for that to sell how not-on-the-same page they are or was that a legit botch?) Punk and Darby double-clotheslined Starks over the top rope. (You’d think that would get a bigger pop considering what MJF & Cole have done to revive interest in that move.) They double-clotheslined Christian over the top rope. (Some fans caught on and chanted “Double Clothesline!”) Ian interrupting the moment by saying he had a breaking news announcement, but he said he’d wait until after the break. Meanwhile, Punk landed a top rope rope bodypress onto both Starks and Christian at ringside. Darby then landed a Coffin Drop onto both of them. They cut to the partial split-screen break. [c/pss]

Back from the break, Starks and Christian were in control of Punk. A “Let’s Go Ricky! / C.M. Punk!” dueling chant broke out. Starks walked the top rope and leaped off with a forearm after some showmanship. Christian tagged back in and continued to beat on Punk. They showed Scorpio Sky watching from a luxury suite. Punk leaped and hot-tagged in Darby at 12:00. He gave Christian a stunner and then scored a near fall on Starks after a sunset bomb. Then he dove onto Starks at ringside. When he flew through the ropes on the other side of the ring toward Luchasaurus, he bounced right off of him. Christian threw him into the announce desk at ringside.

Starks took control of Darby in the ring and scored a two count at 15:00. He delivered a running snake eyes and a flying clothesline for a near fall. They cut to another break. [c/ss]

During the break, Christian tagged in continued to beat on Darby. Starks yanked Punk off the ring apron just as Darby got in range for a tag. Punk chased Starks around the ring. When he returned to his corner, Christian yanked Darby out of the corner. Christian slapped Punk, drawing him into the ring. Christian and Starks were able to double-stomp away at Darby as the ref reprimanded Punk.

Punk finally got the hot tag at 20:00 and rallied against both Starks and Christian. He scored a two count on Christian. Christian came back and climbed to the top rope, but Punk tossed him to the mat with a backdrop. Christian laid in perfect position for a Punk top rope flying elbow. Punk took time to smile at Starks before landing his elbowdrop for a two count. Christian tagged in Starks. They went into a backslide battle and bridge. Starks and Punk exchanged strikes mid-ring. Punk landed a high kick to Starks and knocked him down and win the battle of strikes mid-ring. Punk tagged in Darby.

Darby ducked Starks twice, but crash-landed hard. Starks then landed his Roshambo for a near fall. That was wild and intense. Starks set up a top rope superplex, but Darby countered into a reverse DDT off the top rope. Christian interrupted the ref’s count. Punk entered and set up a GTS, but Christian raked his eyes. Punk gave Christian a GTS at ringside seconds later. Darby climbed to the top rope, but Luchasaurus knocked him off the top rope. Starks then scored a leverage pin with a grip on the bottom rope to score the three count. Punk knocked Starks to the floor and Starks ran off before he could celebrate.

WINNER: Starks & Christian in 25:00.

(Keller’s Analysis: That action earned the time it was allotted. Some things felt a little iffy timing wise, but it all worked out well and was dramatic and a crowd-pleaser, even if the the face/heel dynamic was a little mixed with Starks and Punk throughout. Christian is doing such good heel work these days. Punk is looking good in the ring and seems to be finding his timing and cardio more and more each week. It’s nice to see Starks in a prominent role like this, too.)

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