By Rich Bailin, ProWrestling.net Contributor (@RichBailin)
AEW Dark: Elevation (Episode 37)
Taped November 10, 2021 in Indianapolis, Indiana at Indiana Farmers Coliseum
Streamed November 15, 2021 on the AEW YouTube Page
Tony Schiavone introduced fellow broadcast team members Mark Henry and Paul Wight. Schiavone sent it to ring announcer Justin Roberts…
1. Nasty Russ, T-Money and Shawn Cook vs. Billy, Austin and Colten Gunn. Billy and Cook started the match. Billy punched Cook in the face then tagged in Austin. When Austin came in Cook caught Austin with a jawbreaker and tagged in Russ. Austin and Colten tagged in and out working over Russ until Russ was caught in the Gunn’s corner.
Gunn fought out of the corner and was able to tag in T-Money. T-Money was able to land a couple of shots to Colten but Austin ran in and tripped up T-Money and Colten followed up with a lariat. A short while later and Billy looked like he was going to lift T-Money up for a powerbomb but hit a Fameasser instead and pinned T-Money.
Billy, Austin and Colten Gunn defeated Nasty Russ, T-Money and Colten Gunn by pinfall in 2:30.
Bailin’s Breakdown: A quick showcase for the Gunn Club and they remain undefeated. Are they ever going to have Wight wrestle them? I figured his 3 on 1 handicap matches would be leading to a match against the Gunn Club. While it’s not necessarily a match that I have been looking forward to, it does need to happen at some point, right?
2. Nyla Rose, The Bunny and Emi Sakura (w/Lulu Pencil, Mei Suruga, Vickie Guerrero) vs. Riho, Ryo MIzunami and Skye Blue. Riho and Sakura started the match with Sakura kneeing Riho in the gut and then throwing Riho by her hair across the ring. Sakura attempted the hair toss again but Riho cartwheeled out of it and drop kicked Sakura. Riho then tagged in Blue and then hit Sakura with a facebuster as Blue came off the ropes with a low dropkick. Blue tagged Riho back in and then Mizunami also came into the ring.
Blue and Mizunami held Sakura’s arms while Riho posed on Sakura’s back. Lulu Pencil and Mei Suruga grabbed Mizunami and Blue by the ankles and pulled them out of the ring. Nyla ran into the ring and charged at Riho but Riho pulled down the top rope and Rose toppled over the rope and onto the floor. Mizunami and Blue held Rose as Riho came off the top rope and hit a cross body. Rose was sent back into the ring and Riho climbed the top rope again but was held onto by Vickie Guerrero.
Rose used the distraction to slam Riho off the top rope. Sakura was still the legal woman and went for a pinfall but only got a two count. Sakura then locked Riho in the bow and arrow then hit Riho with a backbreaker followed by Sakura’s cross body block into the corner. Sakura then tagged in the Bunny. Riho fought away from the Bunny and made the tag to Mizunami. Mizunami hit a shoulder tackle to the Bunny then another to Sakura that knocked Sakura off the apron. Mizunami attempted another tackle to Rose but Rose avoided it and grabbed Mizunami for The Bunny to attack but Mizunami moved out of the way and Bunny wound up knocking Rose off the apron.
Mizunami then speared the Bunny. Blue made a blind tag but waited for the Bunny to hit Down the Rabbit Hole before breaking up the pinfall attempt. The Bunny tagged in Rose and charged towards Blue who was in the corner. Blue got the leg up and climbed to the top rope. Blue attempted to come off the top with a huracanrana but Rose held on and transitioned Blue into the Beast bomb for the pinfall victory.
Nyla Rose, The Bunny and Emi Sakura defeated Riho, Ryo Mizunami and Skye Blue by pinfall in 5:30.
Bailin’s Breakdown: Mizunami gets new partners against a team with Rose and Sakura, and Mizunami loses. AEW hasn’t done a good job of explaining the issues that have Mizunami facing Sakura and Rose in some form on a weekly basis.
3. Matt Hardy, The Blade and Isiah Kassidy vs. Evil Uno, Stu Grayson and Alan “5” Angels. Kassidy and Angels started the match. Neither were able to gain an advantage until Angels hit a dropkick to Kassidy and then tagged in Grayson, Grayson immediately tagged in Uno. Grayson went down to one knee in anticipation of Uno slamming Kassidy onto it but Uno just slammed Kassidy then posed like Captain Morgan using Grayson’s knee. Kassidy then tagged in Hardy. Uno hit Hardy with a couple of shoulder tackles and came off the ropes to attempt another but the Blade swiped at Uno’s ankle. As
Uno turned around Hardy clipped him and then tagged in the Blade. The Blade got into Uno’s face, jawing at him so Uno grabbed the Blade’s hand and bit his fingers and then tagged in Grayson. Grayson and the Blade fought back and forth trading punches, kicks and knees. The Blade pushed Grayson into the HFO’s corner but Grayson started to fight out. As Grayson went to leave the corner Hardy and Kassidy each grabbed a leg and crotched Grayson on the ring post. Kassidy continued to work over Grayson including a huracanrana followed by a lariat.
Kassidy then tagged in Hardy and held Grayson so Hardy could come off the middle rope with an elbow drop. Hardy then hit Grayson with a Side effect for a two count. Hardy then attempted the Leech but Grayson somehow spun out of it and hit Hardy with a dropkick. Hardy tagged in Kassidy and the Blade also came in in an attempt to stop Grayson from tagging out. Grayson hit them both with a double Pele kick and made the tag to Uno. Uno grabbed a kick from Hardy and sent Hardy’s leg into the referee who held Hardy’s leg and allowed Uno to hit Hardy with a neckbreaker.
Kassidy and the Blade went for a double Irish whip on Uno but Uno criss crossed them into each other and made the tag to Angels. Angels came in and cleared the ring then all 3 members of the Dark order hit splashes to each member of the HFO. The crowd started to chant “This is awesome.” The match started to break down with everyone hitting big moves including Hardy hitting the Twist of Fate on Grayson. Hardy went to hit Angels next but Angels sent Hardy out of the ring. Angels then hit a Sliced Bread onto Kassidy and made a pinning attempt but Kassidy hooked Angels and held on for the three count.
Matt Hardy, The Blade and Isiah Kassidy defeated “The Dark Order” Evil Uno, Stu Grayson and Alan “5” Angels by pinfall in 8:00.
Bailin’s Breakdown: A bit of a surprising outcome, but realistically the match could have gone either way. I personally would have thought the Dark Order would have won because they were the established team and Kassidy and Blade were without their partners. A good match up though.
4. Andrade El Idolo (w/Jose) vs. Lord Crewe. Andrade held onto a headlock and kept putting it on each time Crewe would fight out. Crewe backed Andrade into the corner and hit a couple of punches but posed afterwards which allowed Andrade to kick Crewe in the face. Andrade then hit Crewe with an elevated spinning neckbreaker followed by the El Idolo (hammerlock flatliner) for the pinfall.
Andrade El Idolo defeated Lord Crewe by in 2:30.
Bailin’s Breakdown: A quick showcase for Andrade. I didn’t see it happen but at some point, Andrade blew out the crotch of his pants, which was probably the most noteworthy thing coming out of this match.
5. Charlie Kruel vs. Ruby Soho (w/Billy Roc). Schiavone mentioned before the bell that Billy Roc was Ruby Soho’s original trainer. Soho went for a handshake, but Kruel tilted Soho’s hand and played patty cake before kicking Soho in the stomach. Soho responded with a back heel trip and then hit an armdrag and locked in an armbar. Kruel backed Soho into the corner and when the referee went to separate them Kruel hit Soho a couple of times.
Kruel sent Soho into the opposite corner and charged but Soho went up and hooked Kruel by the neck and used her legs to send Kruel into the middle turnbuckle. Soho then hit Kruel with a series of kicks followed by a belly to back suplex and the No Future kick for the pinfall.
Ruby Soho defeated Charlie Kruel by pinfall in 2:00.
6. QT Marshall vs John Silver. Marshall came to the ring without the Factory. The Dark Order came to the stage with Silver, but Silver came to the ring alone as well. The crowd immediately started to chant “Johnny Hungee”. Before they locked up Marshall took the mic. He said he didn’t give a crap if Johnny was “Hungee” Marshall came here to wrestle and he is one of the best in AEW. Marshall went for the go behind on Silver and then did the Dark Order pose. Silver responded with a kick Marshall’s chest.
Silver hit Marshall with a back elbow, then went to lift Marshall. Marshall blocked and lifted Silver over the top rope and onto the apron. As Silver came into the ring, he was met with a kick from Marshall followed by a backbreaker. Silver fought back and climbed to the middle rope but was caught by Marshall and hit with another back breaker for a two count. Marshall continued his attack on Silver’s back but wasted too much time which allowed Silver to fight back with a series of kicks followed by a high back drop.
Marshall reversed an Irish whip attempt but was caught and power bombed by Silver for a near fall. Silver missed a punt kick and Marshall rolled him up for a two count. Marshall then tried a back slide pin attempt but Silver rolled out and hit a series of kicks on to Marshall. Marshall caught Silver coming off the ropes with an elevated elbow and then hit Silver with a backbreaker on to Marshall’s shoulder which gave Marshall a near fall. Marshall motioned for the Diamond Cutter but Silver pushed off. A moment later Silver caught Marshall in a torture rack and then hit the Spin Doctor for the pinfall…
John Silver defeated QT Marshall by pinfall in 6:00.
Bailin’s Breakdown: A good back and forth match that I would put slightly below the Dark Order/HFO match from earlier just based on the pacing. Marshall works a little too methodically (a/k/a slow) at times, but that’s just me.
Another quick episode of Elevation this week at 43:06. It was interesting they went with the three trios matches one after another and closed with the the singles matches at the end. It really didn’t affect the show one way or another, just a little interesting. The match of the night goes to the aforementioned HFO vs. Dark Order match, followed by the women’s trios (please get Mizunami regular partners if these matches are going to continue) and Silver vs. Marshall. After an excellent Full Gear though, it’s hard to say that any of these matches felt must see.