By Briar Starr, ProWrestling.net Contributor (@briarstarrtv)
AEW Dark (Episode 95)
Taped in Jacksonville, Florida at Daily’s Place
Streamed June 29, 2021 on the AEW YouTube Page
Excalibur and Taz were on commentary…
1. Baron Black vs. Wardlow. Wardlow lifted up Black and planted him down with the gut-wrench bomb. Black countered back by targeting the left arm, but ran into a clothesline. Wardlow then knocked out Black with a knee.
Wardlow defeated Baron Black via ref stoppage.
Briar’s Take: This is the first time that Wardlow has wrestled since his loss to Jake Hager on Friday Night Dynamite on June 6. He looked good and finished his opponent off quickly, as he normally does.
2. Vary Morales vs. Lee Johnson. Morales bounced off the middle ropes for an attempted huracanrana, but Johnson landed on his feet. However, Morales fought back with a superkick to Johnson and then the dropkick. Morales then hit the Three Amigos with the falcon arrow. Johnson gained momentum back with a hanging neckbreaker and back elbow. Morales leapt off the top rope and landed right on top of Johnson. Back in the ring, Johnson got a hook of the leg and planted Morales for the win.
Lee Johnson defeated Vary Morales via pinfall.
Briar’s Take: A sleeper match. Morales got more offense in this week and had a great outing Johnson. I could easily watch this match over and over again.
3. Hyan vs. Abadon. Abadon hit the backbreaker on Hyan from the middle rope. Abadon hooked her leg around the head of Hyan and drove her into the mat for the victory.
Abadon defeated Hyan via pinfall.
Briar’s Take: Your typical Abadon match and nothing more.
4. Marko Stunt vs. Powerhouse Hobbs. Stunt hit a shot to the midsection of Hobbs, but Hobbs caught Stunt in midair and quickly hit Town Business for the win.
Powerhouse Hobbs defeated Marko Stunt via pinfall.
Briar’s Take: Powerhouse Hobbs doing Powerhouse things. He picked up another quick victory, this time without Hook and Ricky Starks in his corner.
5. Kenny Bengal vs. Lance Archer. Bengal tried walking to the back, but Archer chased him down and brought him back to the ring. Bengal threw dropkick, but Archer planted him with a clothesline. Archer chokeslammed Bengal and eventually the Hellacoaster.
Lance Archer defeated Kenny Bengal via pinfall.
Briar’s Take: Well, Bengal had the right idea of leaving the arena, but unfortunately for him, Archer ran up and caught him to have the match anyway. Smart idea in the first place, but poor execution.
6. Charlette Renegade vs. Tay Conti. Conti used a front sweep to lock in a side headlock briefly. Renegade fired back with a couple of clotheslines, but Conti used strikes and a Ripcord to Renegade. Conti threw a punt kick and followed with a face wash in the corner. Conti hit the DDTay for the win.
Tay Conti defeated Charlette Renegade via pinfall.
Briar’s Take: All Tay in this match, as she dominated Renegade to get the victory.
7. Chad Lennex and Zachariah vs. QT Marshall and Aaron Solow. Marshall hit a Flatliner combination on Lennex and sent Zachariah flying off the apron. Solow was tagged in and hit a snap suplex on Lennex. Solow bounced off the ropes for a leaping knee drop to Lennex. Both Marshall and Solow continued to make multiple tags to keep Lennex isolated, but he eventually tagged out. Zachariah came in with momentum, but Marshall powerbombed him. Solow hit a diving foot stomp to get the win.
QT Marshall and Aaron Solow defeated Chad Lennex and Zachariah via pinfall.
Briar’s Take: Poor Zachariah. He did the best he could and had the momentum when he had, but Marshall and Solow quickly doubled up on him and put him away for the victory.
8. JD Drake vs. Frankie Kazarian. Drake threw a powerful shot to Kazarian and both began going back and forth with chops. Kazarian performed a missile dropkick. Drake hit an atomic drop and planted Kazarian with a bodyslam. Kazarian came back with a flying forearm and then hit an elevated leg drop. Drake threw a kick and a cannonball at Kazarian. Kazarian locked in the crossface chicken wing and forced Drake submit to the victory.
Frankie Kazarian defeated JD Drake via submission.
Briar’s Take: Never a dull match from Kazarian. The guy is crazy talented, but also a good showing from Drake as well.
9. Arjun Singh vs. Angelico. Singh hit multiple uppercuts to Angelico as the match began. He continued to gain momentum with the back elbow and the scoop slam. Angelico came back and locked in the Navarro Death Roll and made Singh tap out.
Angelico defeated Arjun Singh via submission.
Briar’s Take: Singh had some brief flashes, but it was Angelico who came out on top.
10. Holidead vs. Nyla Rose. Rose powerfully threw Holidead into the corner and followed through with a back elbow. Rose finished Holidead off with the Beast Bomb.
Nyla Rose defeated Holidead via pinfall.
Briar’s Take: Holidead made her AEW debut and Excalibur noted she is a former tag team partner of Thunder Rosa. Unfortunately for Holidead, she didn’t have much of a chance to show what she can do, as Rose quickly put her away quickly.
11. Sonny Kiss vs. The Blade. The Blade planted Kiss on the ropes and hit multiple neckbreakers in the middle of the ring. Kiss gained momentum and hit the splitting leg drop on Blade and nearly got the victory. The Blade shut down Kiss’s momentum with a powerslam and then landed a gut wrench move for the win.
The Blade defeated Sonny Kiss via pinfall.
Briar’s Take: A good match from The Blade and Kiss that felt like it could have gone either way. Kiss had some close near falls, but The Blade would be the one who ended up putting him away.
12. Ashley D’ Amboise vs. Julia Hart. Hart performed a hip toss and went for the cover quickly, but only got a one count. D’ Amboise countered with a scoop slam. Hart hit a standing moonsault press and threw a kick to the face of D’ Amboise. Hart put D’ Amboise away with the splits.
Julia Hart defeated Ashley D’ Amboise via pinfall.
Briar’s Take: The third victory for Hart and a bounce back victory for her coming off the loss with Penelope Ford on the June 6 Friday Night Dynamite.
13. Jack Evans and “Private Party” Marq Quen and Isiah Kassidy vs. Dark Order’s Evil Uno, Stu Grayson, and Colt Cabana. Evans hit a spinning wheel kick to Grayson and tagged in Queen as he came in for a diving crossbody. Evans went for a diving crossbody, but Grayson countered with the powerslam. Grayson hit a belly to belly suplex on Evans. Private Party fired back with a dropkick, Poison Rana combination on Grayson. Grayson finally found a breakthrough after a backflipping kick and tagging in Uno, who performed a huracanrana on Queen. Cabana hit the Manhattan Drop on Evans. Toward the end, everyone came in and hit their signature moves. Cabana lifted up Evans and landed the Chicago Skyline for the victory.
Dark Order’s Evil Uno, Stu Grayson, and Colt Cabana defeated Private Party and Jack Evans via pinfall.
Briar’s Take: A great match from the AEW regulars. Everyone did their parts, except I always roll my eyes when everyone has to hit their signature moves in a row. It’s definitely way overdone. Nonetheless, a good showing from both teams and I think I’ve heard Matt Hardy’s theme song enough for one night. I love rock music, but I can only take so much of one person’s theme song.
14. JDX vs. Capt. Shawn Dean. Dean hit an arm drag to JDX. However, JDX threw a punt kick to the side of the head and a leaping Flatliner. Dean gained momentum with the neckbreaker and a dropkick in the corner. Dean locked JDX for the Margarita submission hold and made JDX tap out for the win.
Shawn Dean defeated JDX via submission.
Briar’s Take: A brief match, but JDX and Dean went back and forth for a little while until Dean got the win. It’s the first time since episode 80 that Dean has wrestled on Dark and he picked up his ninth overall win in 2021.
15. Sage Scott and Jake St. Patrick vs. “The Wingmen” Ryan Nemeth and Cesar Bononi. Bononi sent St. Patrick with the hoss toss across the ring before tagging out. Nemeth hit a chop block on Scott and followed up with a neckbreaker to get the victory.
The Wingmen defeated Sage Scott and Jake St. Patrick via pinfall.
Briar’s Take: The Wingmen got the victory in what was a very short match. Scott and St. Patrick were dominated and barely got any offense. Overall, Dark flowed smoothly and there were a lot of quick matches. So much so, you have to wonder why Dark has so many matches in the first place. Five to eight is respectable, but 15 is a little much, especially if they matches are short in nature. The match of the night goes to Vary Morales vs. Lee Johnson. Both were great and easily the best match on the card. Highly recommend watching this one. Episode 95 clocked in at 1 hour, 32 minutes, and 17 seconds. Final Score: 8.0 out of 10.