By Rich Bailin, ProWrestling.net Contributor (@RichBailin)
AEW Dark: Elevation (Episode 4)
Taped in Jacksonville, Florida at Daily’s Place
Streamed April 5, 2021 on the AEW YouTube Page
Tony Schiavone and Paul Wight were on commentary. After introducing the show, they sent it to ring announcer Justin Roberts…
“Hangman” Adam Page by pinfall in 4:00.
After the match, Page called for a couple of beers and tossed one to Collier who was outside of the ring.
Bailin’s Breakdown: A decent but quick match, which gave Page another win while also allowing Collier to show off some power as well.
Tony and Paul discussed the main event of Ethan Page and Scorpio Sky vs. The Sydal Brothers…
2. Dean Alexander and Carlie Bravo vs. ‘The Varsity Blonds” Griff Garrison and Brian Pillman Jr. Dean and Carlie came out to a Nightmare Factory entrance and were making their tag team debut. Alexander and Garrison started things off. Garrison with the quick tag to Pillman, who just as quickly tagged back in Garrison. The Blonds isolated Alexander in their corner until Garrison attempted a body slam which Alexander slipped out of and clipped Garrison. Bravo in and rammed Garrison’s leg into the ring post.
Alexander tagged back in who hit a side Russian leg sweep and tagged Bravo back in and they hit a double dropkick to Garrison who was on his knees. Garrison slipped out of a double team maneuver and made the tag to Pillman. Pillman hit a dropkick to the outside of the ring on Bravo then threw Bravo back in the ring. Garrison picked up Bravo as Pillman climbed the top rope and connected with his top rope missile dropkick for the win.
The Varsity Blonds beat Dean Alexander and Carlie Bravo by pinfall in 5:00.
Bailin’s Breakdown: Another win for the Blonds, who are now 5-1 and have won five out of six in 2021. I believe this is the first time they have mentioned Alexander and Bravo are in the Nightmare Family. I could be wrong about that though. It was of no consequence anyways cause no other mention was made of the Nightmare Family the rest of the match.
3. Dr. Britt Baker D.M.D. (w/Rebel) vs. Alex Gracia. As Britt made her way to the ring, she grabbed a mic and spoke to Gracia. Britt condescendingly said that Gracia received a musical entrance and everything. We all know how this is going, Britt is the big star, Gracia is the enhancement talent, Britt is going to make quick work of Gracia and no one will remember her. But Gracia had such an impressive showing against Thunder Rosa last week and because Britt is so motivated to continue to elevate women’s wrestling on Elevation, she is willing to give Gracia her best showing.
Baker said Gracia isn’t going to win but let’s put some respect behind the pink dream. Britt is an experienced death match wrestler and is also extremely qualified in Greco-Roman and freestyle wrestling. Britt then put herself in the referee’s position. Gracia cautiously went for the lock up which Britt quickly reversed and got Gracia set up for the Lockjaw, Britt then said “Just like that the Pink Dream is over.” Britt then called for the black glove which Rebel passed to her from her crutch and then locked in the Lockjaw.
Britt Baker beat Alex Gracia by submission in roughly 0:30.
Bailin’s Breakdown: Well Britt didn’t lie, that was a quick one. More of a promo than an actual match. It wouldn’t surprise me if they had another match next week at some point, not that I expect the result to be any different.
4. Dark Order’s “10” vs “The Radioactive Papi” Danny Limelight. 10 overpowered Limelight to start. Limelight is able to take over after ramming 10’s head into the ring post. Limelight started to work on 10’s left arm. 10 regained control and hit Limelight with a spinebuster and then attempted a full nelson which Limelight countered into a judo throw and into and arm lock. 10 rolled out and was able to get a 1 count from a pin attempt. 10 then pump kicked Limelight and went for a deadlift powerbomb which Limelight countered to a triangle choke. 10 punched his way out and was able to lock in the full nelson for the submission victory.
Dark Order’s 10 beat Danny Limelight by submission in 6:00.
Bailin’s Breakdown: Best match of the night so far. Going in, I thought this match could go either way. Limelight wrestled a more grounded game as opposed to the high flying and unorthodox move set of previous matches we have seen him in. 10 is now 9-1.
5. Big Swole vs. Jazmin Allure. Swole was on the offensive early and hit a hip toss which sent Allure outside the ring. Swole then whipped Allure back and forth from the ring to the ringside barrier repeatedly then sent Allure back into the ring. Allure kicked out of a cloverleaf attempt and then briefly took over. Allure sent Swole to the corner and charged in but Swole countered and slammed Allure down. Swole then with a double underhook powerbomb which she transitioned into the Texas Cloverleaf and Allure tapped out.
Big Swole beat Jazmin Allure by submission in 4:00.
Matt and Mike Sydal were in the back with Dasha. Mike said he was feeling pretty beat up after last week, but he is a Sydal and they bend but they don’t break. That’s why he is standing on his own two feet to fight with his brother tonight. Matt was disappointed in Sky, who welcomed him to AEW and it turns out he is just another phony. Matt sees through Page and Sky’s makeshift partnership and they would what the Sydal brothers are saying…
Bailin’s Breakdown: Another showcase win for Swole, who continues to look good. Hopefully they have something in mind for her soon. Nothing earth shattering from the Sydals, but an effective promo from them nonetheless.
6. Vary Morales vs. Michael Nakazawa. They went for a lock up but Nakazawa received a call on his headset. Morales grabbed Nakazawa with the headset wire and hit a flying head scissors. Nakazawa crotched Morales on the top rope and then slid Morales across the top rope in what Paul called the Hentai Slide. Nakazawa then choked Morales with the headset wire. Morales gained the advantage briefly until a thrust kick sent Nakazawa into referee Rick Knox. With the distraction Nakazawa nailed Morales with the laptop, then followed that up with a tombstone piledriver for the pinfall.
Michael Nakazawa over Vary Morales in 4:00.
Bailin’s Breakdown: The comedy match you have come to expect from Nakazawa. I’m not sure what purpose it served beyond that.
7. Baron Black vs. Lance Archer. Jake Roberts joined Paul and Tony on commentary. Archer was already beating up Baron Black as they entered the ring. Archer dominated from bell to bell and finally won the match with the Blackout.
Lance Archer beat Baron Black by pinfall in 4:00.
After the match Jake Roberts entered the ring with the mic. Jake said he was going to ask the big guy in the middle something but he didn’t have time. Jake said they did ask him why they kept invading Sting’s space and Jake simply said “Why not?” They sit backstage all day and no one wants to fight them. Archer took the mic with a simple message, it’s his time. But yet Sting, Darby, someone else gets an interview and everyone is scared of Archer. He isn’t a good guy or a bad guy, he just said Everybody Dies and he means it. So why not go for the big dog Sting. Archer has nothing but respect for Sting, who inspired everyone who works in AEW. But once he came back to TNT it’s been all about Sting. Archer then said whether you are with him or against him, it’s on his time and at that time it’s Showtime.
Bailin’s Breakdown: All Archer, which is no surprise. Again, more of a promo even though a match technically preceded it. The match being four minutes was probably more so to allow Jake more time at the commentary desk. I wonder if Jake saying he wanted to ask the big guy something is a little foreshadowing of getting Paul away from the desk and in the ring.
8. Tesha Price vs. Ryo Mizunami. There was a collar and elbow tie up to start the match. Ryo pushed Tesha into the ropes and gave a clean break. Tony mentioned this was just one of only 50 documented matches for Price. Ryo with her repeated chops on Tesha. Ryo missed one and chopped the turnbuckle, Price bit Ryo’s arm. Price locked in a full nelson which Ryo quickly escaped from. Powerslam by Ryo followed by three leg drops. Ryo then locked Price into a torture rack, which she escaped by raking Ryo’s eyes. Ryo recovered then hit a spear for the pinfall.
Ryo Mizunami beat Tesha Price in 6:00.
Bailin’s Breakdown: Decent matchup. Price was able to look good as well during her short bursts of offense.
9. Max Caster (w/Anthony Bowens) vs. Colt Cabana. Max rapped about Colt on his way to the ring. Colt left and ran to the back and brought out Evil Uno to be in his corner as Max brought Bowens. They started with some basic back and forth maneuvers until Colt hit a flying head scissors which sent Caster to the corner. Colt attempted a flip out of the Corner but Bowens held the back of Caster’s tights which sent Cabana to the mat. Caster took over and started to work over Cabana’s arm and shoulder.
Later, Caster went for a corner splash and Cabana moved which caused Caster to hit the turnbuckle. Cabana took over but was favoring his right arm. Bowens threw the chain he was wearing to Uno who caught it and caused referee Aubrey Edwards to be distracted. Bowens then put the boombox in the ring and Caster with a drop toe hold onto the boombox. Caster then rolled Cabana up for the pin.
Max Caster beat Colt Cabana in 7:30.
Bailin’s Breakdown: Caster is now 3-0 against the Dark Order after beating 10, Alex Reynolds, and now Colt Cabana. It was good to see Bowens back as well. A good match, but I never got the impression Caster was at risk of losing.
10. Adam Priest, Ryzin, D3, and Fuego Del Sol vs. The Butcher, The Blade, and “Private Party” Marq Quen and Isiah Kassidy (w/Matt Hardy, The Bunny). Butcher, Blade, and Private Party attacked at the bell and they isolated D3 in the Hardy corner. D3 sent to the outside and Bunny laid in kicks to D3. Isiah threw D3 back in the ring to The Blade. D3 slipped out of a suplex attempt and tagged in Feugo Del Sol who was able to land some offense for his team. Blade broke up a pin attempt then everyone back in the ring. The Butcher and The Blade hit Full Death on Del Sol for the pin.
The Butcher, The Blade, and Private Party beat Adam Priest, Ryzin, D3, and Fuego Del Sol in 5:00.
Bailin’s Breakdown: Quick and decisive win for the Hardy Family Office to allow them some time working together.
The Showcase segment was hosted by Paul Wight and featured John Silver. Paul asked about John’s journey to get to AEW. John started wrestling at 15 and he and Alex Reynolds clicked right away and called themselves The Beaver Boys. They got to AEW and the board said local talent and they knew they needed to find a way to show off what they could right away. Evil Uno recruited them and the best decision they made was joining the Dark Order.
Paul asked about Brodie Lee’s influence on John’s career. Brodie took the Dark Order to the next level right away. Brodie was always genuine and always wanted to help them. Paul asked about the match John had with Darby Allin and what his personal goals are. John said first he needed to heal his shoulder. After the match with Darby, it meant a lot that Sting and Darby gave him respect. Once John is healed, he needs a championship. Whether it be the tag titles, or the TNT Title or why not the AEW World Championship.
Bailin’s Breakdown: This was very similar to the Rising Star segments from previous weeks, only this is with established stars and Paul Wight asking questions. It was good to see a different side to Silver than the comedic side he usually shows.
11. Matt Hardy vs. Dark Order’s ‘5’. As Matt made his way to the ring Tony and Paul reviewed the history between the Dark Order and Matt Hardy. Hardy quickly took control and worked over 5. Hardy attempted a Twist of Fate that 5 slipped out of. Hardy held on and lifted 5 into a Razor’s Edge but 5 slipped out and flipped Hardy with a hunacarana. 5 with kicks to Hardy but missed a spin kick. 5 countered another Twist of Fate into a backslide for a two count. 5 with a drop kick and the diving splash into Hardy who was in the ropes.
5 missed a moonsault and Hardy performed a Side Effect. Hardy tried another Twist of Fate that 5 countered with a Wing Snapper. Hardy rolled out of the ring to avoid a pin attempt. 5 brought Hardy back into the ring, but Hardy kicked the ropes as 5 tried to enter the ring himself. Hardy then performed a DDT and followed it up with a double underhook and body scissors maneuver that Tony and Paul called The Leech. 5 tapped out.
Matt Hardy beat Dark Order 5 in 6:30.
After the match Hardy took the mic and spoke how today is April 5th, which means March Madness is over. He said everyone is probably watching the championship game, but everyone should be watching Matt Hardy because as of April 1st he is making all of his money. He is so angry about what happened during the first quarter that he is going to take it out on every member of the Dark Order, and 5 was just number one on his hit list. He will destroy the Dark Order with the Hardy Family Office. They will dominate and take all the titles. Speaking of titles, he heard Darby Allin call him a sellout. He didn’t sell out, he smartened up. He is going for the TNT Title, and Darby is now on his list.
Bailin’s Breakdown: Good showing by Alan Angels, who was able to counter the Twist of Fate a number of times. That was also the first time I believe we have seen Hardy’s new finisher also. Lots of moving parts between the HFO and The Acclaimed looking to take out the Dark Order with Hardy and potentially Lance Archer going after the TNT Title.
12. Scorpio Sky and Ethan Page vs. Matt Sydal and Mike Sydal. Matt and Sky started the match. It broke down quickly and all 4 men in the ring. The Sydal’s with double Matrix bridges and Mike with a drop toe hold and Matt with a baseball slide kick to Sky. Mike tagged in and hit a standing moonsault on Sky for a two count. Sky kicked Mike in the leg and Sky then distracted the ref which allowed Page to drive Mike’s knee into the ring apron.
Page tagged in with punches to Mike, he then worked on Mike’s injured knee. Page and Sky tag in and out and continued to work on Mike’s knee. Mike was able to get a forward roll for a 2 count on Sky and then Mike tagged in Matt. Matt with a brainbuster to Sky but Sky is able to make the tag. As Sky tagged Page in, Matt hit a hunacarana but Page followed up with a shoulder tackle. Matt tagged in Mike and while they attempted a double team referee Bryce Remsburg was trying to remove Matt from the ring. With the ref distracted Sky clipped Mike and the Page hit the Ego’s Edge for the pinfall
Scorpio Sky and Ethan Page beat Matt Sydal and Mike Sydal in 7:00.
Bailin’s Breakdown: A good tag match and main event that established the new partnership between Scorpio Sky and Ethan Page. Overall, this was an OK episode of Elevation, but if you missed it, you didn’t miss a whole lot. This episode clocked in at about 1 hour 37 minutes which is about an hour less than it was last week. It does seem that Elevation is starting to hit a stride with enhancement matches along with some storytelling. There were more promos than a typical episode of Dark or Dark Elevation, which helped with the flow of the show. As always, thanks for reading and I will see you next week.