By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
AEW Double Or Nothing
Aired live May 29, 2022 live on pay-per-view and B/R Live
Las Vegas, Nevada at T-Mobile Arena
The AEW Double Or Nothing Buy In Pre-Show
-Excalibur and Tony Schiavone checked in from the broadcast table for the live portion of the show that started after 30 minutes of video packages. They ran through the main card lineup.
Powell’s POV: Yes, they included the MJF vs. Wardlow match while running through the pay-per-view matches.
-A video package spotlighted the House of Black vs. Death Triangle feud.
The Acclaimed’s music played. Max Caster rapped while Austin Gunn, Colten Gunn, and Anthony Bowens joined him on the stage. Bowens was in a wheelchair while recovering from knee surgery. They repeated the gag from Rampage where the Gunns tried to do Bowens’ part and failed, so he did it. Bowens called for the crowd to say Ass Boys, so the Gunns wheeled him backstage.
-A pre-taped Eddie Kingston promo aired. Kingston took a shot of whiskey and said he was trying to drown his demons. He said he didn’t know how he would act or what he would do on Sunday, and added that he doesn’t even know the rules of the match. Kingston said Chris Jericho brought him back to a place where he’s drinking, doesn’t talk to people, and sits in a dark room and thinks bad thoughts.
Kingston said Jericho burned his face. He sad he doesn’t want to wrestle because he’s terrified of what he’s going to do to Jericho and his teammates. Kingston said he’s hurt people his entire life and now Jericho has brought the demon back. Kingston dropped the whiskey bottle on the ground. He said he’s going back to what is comfortable, which is burying Jericho and hurting him. Kingston told Jericho he would find out what he lived in fear of himself and why no company wanted him. Kingston said this is also on Tony Khan because he could have stopped him from becoming this. Kingston said he drinks to drown his demons, but they know how to swim…
Powell’s POV: Fantastic mic work from Kingston. He is among the very best talkers in the game.
-A video package aired on Owen Hart and the tournament named in his honor.
1. Hook and Danhausen vs. Tony Nese and Mark Sterling. Taz joined the broadcast team ahead of the ring entrances. Hook and Nese started the match. Hook took Nese down and he immediately ducked to ringside. Hook backed into his corner and then Danhausen tagged himself in.
Nese invited Danhausen to apply a headlock, which he immediately broke. Danhausen avoided a couple of Nese’s moves and then did his curse routine. Nese ran into a big boot and then Danhausen performed a huracanrana. Sterling did something that the camera missed and was cursed by Danhausen, but the distraction let Nese take offensive control.
Sterling tagged in and put the boots to Danhausen before tagging out again. Nese threw kicks at Danhausen and then tagged in Sterling, who suplexed him. Danhausen avoided a leg drop. Sterling tagged out. Nese ran in and knocked Hook off the apron. Danhausen ducked a punch and then suplexed Nese before tagging out.
Hook took Nese down and followed up with a clothesline and an overhead suplex. Hook pulled Sterling into the ring. Nese grabbed Hook, who countered into a suplex that cleared Nese from the ring. Hook suplexed Sterling and played to the receptive crowd. Hook did a throat slash gesture on Sterling and then pointed to Danhausen and tagged him in. Danhausen put one foot on Sterling while the referee made the three count…
Hook and Danhausen beat Tony Nese and Mark Sterling in 5:20.
Powell’s POV: A fun and well received opening match. Hook continues to be very popular, and Danhausen gets strong reactions from AEW live crowds even if he is a polarizing figure with the masses.
-The broadcast team ran through the main card lineup and then a video package aired on Hangman Page vs. CM Punk for the AEW Championship.
-Excalibur noted that BR/Live was up and running after some technical difficulties.
-Ring announcer Justin Roberts introduced Jim Ross, who made his entrance to the Oklahoma fight song. Ross spoke with Excalibur and Schiavone and noted that it was a sold out crowd with over 14,000 fans in attendance. Ross closed the pre-show by saying that viewers who don’t order the show would regret it for a long time.
AEW Double Or Nothing Main Card
Pyro shot off on the stage while the broadcast team of Jim Ross, Excalibur, and Tony Schiavone checked in from their desk. Ross said this is the most excited he’s been for a pay-per-view broadcast. Excalibur introduced one of the foreign language broadcast teams and then hyped a game with their daily fantasy sports partner. An ad for a contest with the sponsor was shown…
MJF’s entrance music played. Ross said they were awaiting the arrival of MJF. He walked out moments later and looked to the crowd and then kissed the Dynamite Diamond Ring. MJF wore a Ric Flair style robe that had “Better Than You” on it. An “asshole” chant broke out. Justin Roberts introduced MJF, who then acted like an airplane and gave the up yours arm motion.
Wardlow was shown seated in a holding cell in the backstage area. A security guard opened the door and led the handcuffed Wardlow through the backstage area and then into the arena for his entrance without music. Once at ringside, security removed Wardlow’s handcuffs. Excalibur noted that he was wearing two pairs of handcuffs after breaking through a single pair on AEW Dynamite…
2. Wardlow vs. MJF. Once Wardlow entered the ring, MJF ducked to ringside and told the referee to make Wardlow back up. Once MJF was back in the ring, the referee called for the bell. Wardlow charged at MJF, who dove back to ringside. MJF returned to the ring and then slipped away again. He jawed at a woman in the crowd. MJF returned to the ring and immediately ducked to the floor. Wardlow grabbed him from the ring.
Wardlow went for an early powerbomb, but MJF bit his head to avoid it. A short time later, MJF put the diamond ring on, but the referee took it away. MJF tried to shake hands with Wardlow, who obliged and then held onto his hand. Wardlow powerbombed MJF and the crowd popped huge. Wardlow played to the crowd a bit and then powerbombed MJF again.
Wardlow played to the crowd for one more and then powerbombed MJF for a third time. Wardlow played musical conductor and then powerbombed MJF two more times before putting his foot on top of him. When the referee counted to two, Wardlow stepped off of MJF to break the count. Wardlow powerbombed MJF again. Wardlow asked the crowd if they wanted another powerbomb and then gave it to them. Wardlow powerbombed MJF two more times. He lowered the straps on his singlet and gave him another powerbomb and then put his foot on him and got the pin.
Wardlow defeated MJF in 7:30.
Excalibur said Wardlow is now free of MJF’s contract and free to officially join AEW. Trainers came out and put MJF in a neck brace before placing him on a stretcher. A “you deserve it” chant broke out as MJF was wheeled to the back.
Tony Schiavone spoke with Wardlow on the stage and passed along word from Tony Khan that Wardlow is now All Elite. The live crowd cheered and chanted “you deserve it” while a “Wardlow Is All Elite” logo appeared on the screens on the stage. Wardlow played to the crowd and then headed to the back…
Powell’s POV: An all out squash match win for Wardlow. I had little doubt that Wardlow was going to win, but one can only wonder if the match would have been laid out differently had it not been for the drama between MJF and Tony Khan. It will be very interesting to see what happens next with that situation, but one thing we do know is that Wardlow is over huge. MJF obviously played a huge part in that and this was an outstanding longterm storyline.
A brief video package set up The Hardys vs. The Young Bucks. Another video set to the tune of “Viva Las Vegas” aired with “Superkick Party” inserted into the chorus. Entrances for the match took place…
3. “The Young Bucks” Matt Jackson and Nick Jackson (w/Brandon Cutler) vs. Matt Hardy and Jeff Hardy. Caprice Coleman sat in on commentary. Matt Hardy and Matt Jackson had a “Delete” and “Elite” hand gesture battle before starting the match. After some early Hardy offense, the Bucks isolated Jeff. Nick stood on the floor and mocked the fans with a one-man “that was awesome” chant. Jeff eventually caught the Bucks with a double clothesline. As Jeff was about to tag out, Cutler pulled Matt Hardy off the apron.
Nick went for a Whisper in the Wind, which Jeff avoided. Jeff got up and hit the move instead. Matt Hardy tagged in and worked over Matt Jackson and Cutler. Nick caught Matt Hardy with a kick from the apron. He motioned for Jeff, who flipped him off. Nick performed a springboard into a facebuster. Nick went for a move on Matt Hardy at ringside, but Matt saw it coming.
Jeff set up for a springboard move, but Nick superkicked him off the rope and he fell onto both Matts below. Nick went up top and flip dived onto the Hardys. A short time later, the Bucks hit a double dive onto Matt Hardy and then Matt Jackson covered him for a two count. Nick caught his brother with a knee to the head in the corner and then accidentally kicked Cutler. Matt Hardy backdropped Nick at ringside and then Jeff dove onto him from the apron. Matt Hardy hit a Side Effect on the apron on Matt Jackson and all four men stayed down momentarily.
A short time later, Matt Jackson avoided a Swanton from Jeff. Matt Jackson gave Jeff a Twist of Fate and then Nick hit him with his own Swanton finisher for a near fall. A “this is awesome” chant broke out. The Bucks hit both Hardys with double superkicks. The Bucks dominated the next few minutes of the match. They tipped the ring steps on their side and placed Jeff on it, but he fought free. Meanwhile, Matt Hardy performed a crucifix bomb on Nick. Jeff slammed Matt Jackson onto the ring steps. Matt Hardy fought off Nick and Cutler, and then Jeff performed a Swanton on Matt Jackson while he was on the steps. In the ring, Matt Hardy hit Nick with a Twist of Fate for a good near fall.
Nick caught Matt Hardy in a backslide for a two count. Matt Hardy recovered and hit a Twist of Fate and then tagged Jeff, who went up top and hit a Swanton on Nick and then pinned him. After the match, Jeff hopped the barricade and celebrated in the crowd.
Matt Hardy and Jeff Hardy defeated “The Young Bucks” Matt Jackson and Nick Jackson in 19:15.
Powell’s POV: This exceeded my expectations. The Bucks deserve credit for carrying the match, but I also felt that the Hardys rose to the occasion and delivered their best work as a team in AEW to date. The outcome of the match was a bit surprising, but perhaps we’re back to the Bucks’ characters feeling down on their luck again.
A video aired with The Acclaimed, Austin Gunn, and Colten Gunn partying. They cut to Billy Gunn entering a hotel room and finding them all passed out…
4. Jade Cargill vs. Anna Jay for the TBS Championship. Cargill got the Cody-vator entrance and was joined on the stage by Vegas showgirls. Jay performed an early superplex. Jay went for a sunset flip from the ropes and it led to a bad landing. Kiera Hogan and Red Velvet ended up going after Jay at ringside. She fought them off quickly, but Cargill caught her with a kick when she returned to the ring. Cargill set up for her finisher, but Jay rolled her into a pin for a two count.
Mark Sterling limped out with a crutch in hand and also wore a neck brace. Sterling argued with the referee while leaving his crutch. Jay ended up getting it and performed a move with it and ended up getting a two count. John Silver ran out and ended up putting Sterling down with a brainbuster. In the ring, Cargill hit the Eye of the Storm for a two count. Cargill followed up with a Jaded attempt, but Jay slipped out and caught her in a rear naked choke. Cargill got to he feet and backed Jay into the corner to break the hold.
Jay regained control and went up top. Cargill caught her and joined her on the ropes where they traded forearms and elbows. Stokely Hathaway (f/k/a Malcolm Bivens) walked out and stood at ringside. Cargill hit Jaded from the middle rope and scored the pin.
Jade Cargill defeated Anna Jay in 7:25 to retain the TBS Championship.
After the match, Hogan and Velvet held up Jay for Cargill. Kris Statlander ran out and stared down the heels. Velvet got in the face of Statlander.
Athena (f/k/a Ember Moon) made her entrance to a big ovation. Athena entered the ring and stood between Statlander and Jay while squaring off with Cargill. Hathaway led Cargill, Velvet, and Hogan out of the ring without any physicality…
Powell’s POV: The crowd treated this as a comedown match to start, but they seemed to get more invested as it went on. It was very clunky at times and not nearly as good as their previous match. It was fun to see Hathaway and Athena show up. I look forward to hearing Hathaway unleashed, and the former Ember Moon is a nice addition to the women’s roster. The broadcast team made it seem as though Hathaway is new representation for Cargill, so I guess that means Sterling is no longer a part of her act.
A Forbidden Door video package aired for the June 26 pay-per-view…
5. “Death Triangle” Pac, Penta Oscuro, and Rey Fenix (w/Alex Abrahantes) vs. “House of Black” Malakai Black, Brody King, and Buddy Matthews. Death Triangle had Penta’s son(?) with them during their entrance. Pac wore a mask to the ring, but did not wear it during the match. House of Black had their faces painted.
The wrestlers all took turns performing give dives from the ring to the floor roughly ten minutes in. King was the last man standing. He did a throat slash gesture and then ran the ropes and performed a flip dive and landed on Pac and the apron. A short time later, Death Triangle stuffed a triple brainbuster attempt. They essentially had a superkick party and then Pac performed a brainbuster on Black and covered him, but Matthews broke up the pin.
Penta hit a Canadian Destroyer on Matthews on the apron. Penta held King over the apron and then Fenix performed a double stomp onto him from the top rope. The Death Triangle trio surrounded Black in the ring. He caught the first kick thrown at him, but he ended up taking kicks from all three opponents. Penta set up for the Lucha Bros finisher, but Black avoided it and took them both out. Pac dropped Black with a kick and then went up top and wet up for the Black Arrow. Matthews tried to break it up, but Pac saw him coming and took him out. Pac performed a 450 splash on Black.
Abrahantes distracted the referee while Pac kicked Back in the balls. Pac went up top for his finisher, but the lights went out. When the lights turned on, Julia Hart was standing in the ring. She blew mist in the face of Pac. Black dropped a blinded Pac with his finishing kick and then scored the pin.
“House of Black” Malakai Black, Brody King, and Buddy Matthews beat “Death Triangle” Pac, Penta Oscuro, and Rey Fenix in 15:35.
Afterward, Hart left with the House of Black…
Powell’s POV: The big ass spot fest that you had to know it was going to be. It was a very good for its style and the live crowd ate it up, though they seemed to be reacting to the spots rather than siding with one team over the other. The Hart turn was really dragged out, so at least they finally pulled the trigger on that.
A brief video package set up the next match…
6. Adam Cole vs. Samoa Joe in the men’s Owen Hart Cup Tournament final. Cole wore pink gear with black boots. Mike Chioda was the referee. Joe had his elbow wrapped and Cole targeted it early on. Ross said it was smart wrestling to target the obvious weak point. Cole went for the Panama Sunrise, but Joe stuffed it and drove Cole’s knees into the mat. Cole rolled to the floor. When Joe reached out for him, Cole hit him from ringside.
Back in the ring, Joe slammed Cole for a near fall. Cole came back and put Joe down with a Backstabber for a near fall of his own. Cole put Joe in a submission hold, but Joe got his foot under the bottom rope to break the hold. Joe rallied with a powerbomb for a two count, then immediately applied an STF. Joe released the hold as Cole got closer to the ropes so that he could tie up his arm nearest the rope. Cole was still able to reach the ropes with his foot to break the hold.
Bobby Fish came out and wrenched Joe’s arm over the top rope while Cole distracted the referee. Cole went for his Boom finisher, but Joe ducked it and put him in the Coquina Clutch. Fish climbed onto the apron. Joe released the hold and knocked Fish to the floor. Joe dropped Cole with a chop to the chest. Cole superkicked his shoulder and then his chin. When Joe dropped to the mat, Cole kicked him two more times and then hit him with The Boom knee to the back of the head and pinned him. Cole’s mouth was bloody. Ross said Joe’s left shoulder injury was worse than anyone realized…
Adam Cole defeated Samoa Joe in roughly 12:30 to win the men’s Owen Hart Cup tournament.
Powell’s POV: I didn’t care for the Fish interference. It beat the hell out of Jay Lethal, Sonjay Dutt, and Satnam Singh interfering, but the story of Joe’s shoulder injury was enough to protect him. The approach they took with the interference needlessly cheapened the men’s tournament final.
Another Forbidden Door video aired. A video package set up the women’s tournament finals…
Fozzy guitarist Rich Ward played Britt Baker to the ring. Rebel and Jamie Hayter came out and encouraged Baker before heading to the back. Ward followed to ringside and rocked out. Ring announcer Justin Roberts introduced Rancid, who performed “Ruby Soho” on the stage for Ruby Soho’s entrance…
7. Britt Baker vs. Ruby Soho in the women’s Owen Hart Cup Tournament final. Excalibur it’s not often that Baker is upstaged. There were some dueling chants for both wrestlers to start. A couple minutes into the match, Soho performed a dropkick off the apron onto Baker on the floor. Back inside the ring, Baker cut off Soho on the top rope and took offensive control. Baker put Soho in a head-scissors on the mat and drove elbows at her stomach. Soho rolled onto Baker and got a two count to break the hold.
Later, Soho put Baker down with a Saito suplex. She went up top and performed a Senton Bomb for a nice near fall. Soho set up or a superplex, but Baker slammed her down instead. Baker put Soho down with a Stomp for a good near fall. Baker pulled out her glove for her Lockjaw finisher. Soho rolled away before she could apply it. Baker put her down and tried again, but Soho rolled onto her and got a two count. Both women got to their feet.
Soho hit a detonation kick and then applied a Sharpshooter, but dropped to one knee in the process. Baker inched toward the ropes. Soho reapplied the hold, but Baker managed to reach the ropes. A short time later, Soho went to the ropes and put herself on the shoulders of Baker before performing a victory roll for a two count. Baker reversed it and got the three count.
Britt Baker defeated Ruby Soho in 13:20 to win the women’s Owen Hart Cup tournament.
After the match, Baker approached Soho and held out her hand. Soho took it and then Baker pulled her up to her feet. Baker headed to the stage where Tony Schiavone was standing next to a podium. Adam Cole came out and kissed Baker.
Dr. Martha Hart was introduced by Schiavone. Tony Khan escorted Hart onto the stage. Hart turned and hugged Khan, who kissed her on the cheek before heading backstage. The crowd chanted “Owen” and Martha bobbed along with them. “Wow, thank you so much for that warm welcome,” Hart said. The fans, Cole, and Baker cheered. The fans followed up with a “Thank you, Martha” chant. “Thank you, thank you,” Hart replied.
Hart read from her notes and spoke about the craftsmanship and talent of her late husband. She thanked various people from AEW and her children. She said the partnership was a match made in heaven. She referred to Cole and Baker as a king and a queen and spoke about them taking their spot on a royal throne. Hart said the Owen Hart Cup was theirs to enjoy until they meet again. She noted her Kentucky Derby style hat and said she hopes to see more of them next yea. Hart presented special title belts to Cole and Baker,
Powell’s POV: The match was fine, but if there’s anyone in the women’s division who didn’t need a boost, it’s Baker. I get Cole winning the men’s tournament because he took some high profile losses and this was a bounce back moment for his character. I thought they might do something similar for Soho, but they went with Baker, who is already a star, rather than use the tournament to create a star or give someone a boost who really needed one. I guess they wanted the couple to have a moment? The presentation from Martha Hart was very nice. It also helped the show in terms of slowing things down for a moment.
The broadcast team recapped the previous matches while highlights were shown…
8. Sammy Guevara, Frankie Kazarian, and Tay Conti vs. Scorpio Sky, Ethan Page, and Paige VanZant (w/Dan Lambert) in a mixed trios match. VanZant’s husband Austin Vanderford was shown in the crowd near the ring. Guevara and Conti made out on the stage while making their entrance wearing the UFC and BMF title belts they stole on Rampage. Page put Guevara down early and yelled that he’d been waiting for this. Page threw repeated punches at Guevara. Page set up for the Ego’s Edge, but Guevara countered into a huracanrana. Page performed a nice power slam on Guevara for a two count.
Later, Conti ran across the ring and took a cheap shot at VanZant. She rushed back to her corner and then Guevara twirled her around on the floor and they kissed. Kazarian got pissed because no one was in their corner to take his tag. Kazarian ended up putting Sky in the crossface chicken wing, and then Guevara tagged himself in. Kazarian was upset and went face to face with Guevara.
VanZant and Conti were tagged in. VanZant took Conti down and threw punches at her. VanZant threw a couple of clotheslines and then suplexed Conti. VanZant performed a handspring blow. Guevara pulled Conti away and kissed her. VanZant punched Guevara in the gut and put him down with a DDT. VanZant tripped Conti, who fell face first into her boyfriend’s crotch in the corner. VanZant followed up with a Michinoku Driver for a near all.
Conti rallied with a judo toss. Conti hit some pump kicks and went for a cover, but VanZant kicked out quickly. VanZant took a swing at Guevara even though he was on the floor. Conti performed a backbreaker style move and then made out with Guevara. Sky, Page, and VanZant were in the ring when Guevara and Conti finished kissing. They motioned for Kazarian, who blew them off. Kazarian ended up hitting a move on Sky and then tagged a fallen Conti to enter the match. Kazarian picked up a good near fall on Sky.
Conti got in Kazarian’s face. Guevara tried to superkick Kazarian, who ducked, causing him to superkick Conti. The crowd popped big for the first time all match. Kazarian tossed Guevara to ringside. Page threw a roundhouse kick at Kazarian, and then Sky hit him with his TKO finisher and scored the pin. Excalibur said Guevara and Kazarian can never challenge Sky for the TNT Title ever again…
Scorpio Sky, Ethan Page, and Paige VanZant defeated Sammy Guevara, Frankie Kazarian, and Tay Conti
in roughly 12:30.
Powell’s POV: I hope that stipulation also means we’ve seen this last of this confusing mess of a feud. The fans were quiet, perhaps because they were just as confused by the fact that Kazarian seemed to be the only babyface involved. Well, perhaps VanZant was for the night because she was going against Conti, but I assume VanZant will be a heel going forward since she’s aligned with Lambert. What a strange way for VanZant to debut.
9. Darby Allin vs. Kyle O’Reilly. O’Reilly caught Allin with an early knee to the face. The crowd gasped and Allin came up bleeding from the mouth. A short time later, Allin performed a Stunner, which sent O’Reilly to ringside. Allin performed a suicide dive and somehow cartwheeled and hit O’Reilly with his feet. A short time later, Allin went for another suicide dive, but this time O’Reilly caught him in a guillotine.
Back inside the ring, Allin performed the Last Supper for a two count. Allin caught O’Reilly in a leg lock a short time later, but O’Reilly reached the ropes to break it. Allin ended up going for a Coffin Drop, but O’Reilly caught him in a hold on the way down. Allin rolled onto O’Reilly to break the pin. Both men traded strikes once they were back on their feet and then they both ended up down on the mat again.
When they stood up, O’Reilly slapped Allin across the face and then hooked the chain that Allin wears around his neck in his mouth and wrenched on it. O’Reilly put Allin down with a PK and got a one count. O’Reilly threw another and got a two count. O’Reilly threw another, then went up top and performed a top rope knee drop to the back of Allin and pinned him…
Kyle O’Reilly defeated Darby Allin in roughly 9:50.
Powell’s POV: O’Reilly going over surprised me. He had a good showing in the men’s tournament and then followed up with a win over Allin. My guess is that this is the beginning of a feud, and Allin will eventually get his win back. Either way, it’s nice to see O’Reilly being more than Adam Cole’s sidekick. That said, I don’t think this match or the previous match really needed to be added to the crowded pay-per-view lineup, but Tony Khan loves his marathon shows.
A video package set up the AEW Women’s Championship match…
10. Thunder Rosa vs. Serena Deeb for the AEW Women’s Championship. Rosa controlled the early offense and had the crowd with her. She dropkicked Deeb off the apron and went for a baseball slide that Deeb avoided by returning to the ring. Deeb executed a neckbreaker over the top rope and then shoved Rosa into the ring post. Deeb followed up with a neckbreaker that caused Rosa to fall to the floor. Deeb brought her back in the ring and put Rosa down with a swinging neckbreaker for a two count.
Rosa battled back with a couple of clotheslines and a bodyslam. Rosa whipped Deeb into the corner and she hit her face hard on the middle turnbuckle pad. Rosa performed a running clothesline in the corner. Rosa performed a dropkick on the seated Deeb and then executed a Northern Lights Suplex for a two count. Ross was quick to point out that Rosa was unable to hold onto the leg of Deeb for leverage.
Later, Rosa hit a Death Valley Driver for a near fall. Deeb followed with a chop block and then applied a figure four leg lock. Deeb and Rosa traded slaps while the hold was applied. They ended up rolling out of the ring to the floor, which broke the hold. Back in the ring, Deeb put Rosa down with a move and covered her, but Rosa put her foot on the ropes. Deeb applied the Serenity lock. She released it and put Rosa down with a powerbomb.
Moments later, Deeb avoided a charging Rosa, who crashed in the corner. Deeb went to the ropes and was cut off by Rosa, who executed a top rope superplex. Rosa held on and hit the Tiger Thunder Driver and scored the clean pin..
Thunder Rosa defeated Serena Deeb in 16:55 to retain the AEW Women’s Championship.
Powell’s POV: A well worked match, which you had to know it would be given who was involved. Rosa was cheered throughout the match and yet it didn’t feel like Deeb had much heat. Deeb is excellent in the ring. If she could find the right heel persona and draw more heat, they’d really have something.
11. “Jericho Appreciation Society” Chris Jericho, Jake Hager, Daniel Garcia, Matt Menard, and Angelo Parker vs. Jon Moxley, Bryan Danielson, Eddie Kingston, Santana, Ortiz in an Anarchy in the Arena match. Jericho’s team came out dressed in white with hats on. Their opponents came out to Moxley’s theme from various places in the arena and the brawl started while Moxley’s theme continued to play.
Menard sported a crimson mask less than three minutes into the match while brawling with Kingston. Jericho wanted to leave, but Moxley stopped him. Jericho and Moxley fought on the floor. Moxley also bled. Schiavone made a pitch for fans to call their friends and let them know the show was still going and there were title matches ahead (the NBA game must be over?). Santana and Ortiz performed a Doomsday Blockbuster that put Hager through a couple of tables. Moxley swung a camera into the face of Jericho.
Garcia performed a piledriver on Ortiz on the ring steps that had been tuned over. Add Parker to the list of people who wee bleeding. He hit Danielson with a ring bell. Jericho suplexed Moxley onto chairs. Kingston was being worked over by two opponents in a merch stand in the concourse. Schiavone said that if you thought Stadium Stampede was wild, this was better. Kingston and Garcia were shown fighting in the concourse with fans cheering them on. Garcia had a belt around the neck of Kingston and dragged him across the floor.
Jericho put Moxley in the Walls of Jericho on a table, but it collapsed a second after he applied the move. Both men were fine. Later, the top rope was removed and Moxley used the turnbuckle hook as a weapon on Jericho. Elsewhere, Santana and Ortiz leapt from a ladder and put a couple of opponents through tables on the main floor. Jericho sprayed Moxley with a fire extinguisher.
Danielson and Moxley caught Jericho and Hager in the ring with repeated elbows. They put them in submission holds. Eddie Kingston walked down the ramp with a can of gasoline and poured it on Jericho while Danielson had him in a hold. Danielson took exception and fought with Kingston. Moxley tried to break them up. Jericho hit them all with a chair. Hager knocked Moxley off the apron and through a barbwire table on the floor. Jericho used the ring skirting to wipe the gasoline off of himself. Hager ran Danielson toward Jericho, who hit him with the turnbuckle hook and then covered him for a near fall.
Danielson came to life and threw punches and kicks at Jericho and Hager. Danielson took out Hager with a flying knee. Jericho picked up a chair and then Danielson drove the chair into his face with another flying knee and covered him for a near fall. Schiavone said Tony Khan just informed him that this was the largest audience to ever watch Double Or Nothing. Danielson hit a series of kicks on Jericho. Danielson yelled that he was going to kick Jericho’s “f—ing head in.” Hager hit Danielson from behind with Jericho’s bat. Jericho put Danielson in the Walls of Jericho while Hager choked him with the top rope. The referee called for the bell…
“Jericho Appreciation Society” Chris Jericho, Jake Hager, Daniel Garcia, Matt Menard, and Angelo Parker defeated Jon Moxley, Bryan Danielson, Eddie Kingston, Santana, Ortiz in an Anarchy in the Arena match in 22:45.
Powell’s POV: The broadcast team tried to compare this to Stadium Stampede, but it actually reminded me of the Minneapolis Street Fight between The Inner Circle and Dan Lambert’s team from AEW Full Gear. This match went all over the building and was bloodier and more violent (and obviously lacked the winter sports weapons). The live crowd ate it up. There wasn’t a lot of suspense in terms of near falls until the last minute or two, but everyone involved worked really hard, including the production team that had to keep up with this. I suspect that JAS going over means there will be a Blood & Guts rematch. As much as the build to this match felt underwhelming, this match was crazy enough that it could spark more interest in the feud.
Footage aired of Andrade El Idolo and Jose sitting at a table. Andrade complained about his group being losers. Jose told him that he had his contract for his new business partner. Andrade said the person is his friend and one of the best in the world. There was a knock at the door. Jose opened the door and then Rush stepped inside. Andrade offered him a handshake. Rush stuck his fist out for the LFI fist bump. Andrade bumped fists and welcomed him to AEW…
Powell’s POV: While Rush is a talented guy, he was not the most popular fellow behind the scenes in ROH. People can change, but this is going to be interesting.
Lexi Nair interviewed Scorpio Sky, Ethan Page, and Dan Lambert about putting their feud to bed earlier. Page said it was good to be moving on to bigger and better things. Sky wondered who would step up and challenge him for the TNT Championship next. Dante Martin entered the picture and said just because Guevara can’t challenge Sky for the title doesn’t mean he can’t. Sky said he’s been impressed by Martin, but he’s not ready for this. Sky told him to come to SoCal and he would give him a shot. He told him to remember that he asked for this when he was on his back looking at the lights…
12. Jungle Boy and Luchasaurus (w/Christian Cage) vs. Ricky Starks and Powerhouse Hobbs vs. Keith Lee and Swerve Strickland in a three-way for the AEW Tag Titles. Taz was back on commentary. Jungle Boy’s mother and sister were shown in the crowd. Lee and Strickland performed a nice forearm and enzuigiri combination move on Hobbs early on. Strickland ended up shoving Hobbs in the corner of the champions, and then Jungle Boy tagged himself in.
Jungle Boy got the better of Strickland and hit him with a suicide dive. Jungle Boy went for another dive, but Lee caught him and ended up powerbombing him onto the back of Luchasaurus, who was down on all fours at ringside. Later, there was an awkward spot where Lee dumped Starks to ringside and it looked like a safe spot, but he got away from Luchasaurus and Jungle Boy and landed awkwardly on the floor. The champs checked on Starks and Lee and Strickland waited a moment before going into a followup spot that saw Strickland perform an assisted dive onto all three men below.
A short time later, Lee, Hobbs, and Luchasaurus ended up in the ring together and battled it out. Luchasaurus set up for a double chokeslam, but Lee and Hobbs both grabbed him and slammed him instead. Luchasaurus rolled to the floor, leaving Lee and Hobbs. Lee ended up dumping Hobbs over the top rope. Lee ran the ropes and performed a flip dive onto the champions and Hobbs, which drew a big pop.
Lee and Luchasaurus fought in the ring until Hobbs leapt from the ropes and performed a double Blockbuster. Moments later, Starks had Jungle Boy pinned and used the ropes for leverage until Christian Cage shoved his feet off the ropes. Cage was thrown into the ring steps by Hobbs. Jungle Boy took out Hobbs and then returned to the ring and was nearly beaten by Starks in a dramatic moment.
Hobbs put Luchasaurus down with a spinebuster. Strickland took out Hobbs with a big kick. Luchasaurus accidentally took out Jungle Boy with a kick that was meant for Strickland. Lee held up Jungle Boy while Strickland performed a double stomp. Strickland had the pin, but it was broken up by Hobbs.
Moments later, Strikes tried to bring one of the tag titles in the ring with him, but Cage pulled him to the floor. Strickland rolled up Jungle Boy for a near fall. Jungle Boy went for a Poison Rana, but Strickland blocked it. Luchasaurus entered the ring and then he and Jungle Boy hit their finisher and Strickland and then Jungle Boy pinned him.
Jungle Boy & Luchasaurus defeated Ricky Starks & Powerhouse Hobbs and Keith Lee & Swerve Strickland in a three-way in 17:15 to retain the AEW Tag Titles.
Powell’s POV: The idea was that two wrestlers were allowed in the ring at once, but they kind of ditched that concept when they felt like it. If you can get past that, it was a really entertaining match with some suspenseful near falls. The spot where Starks fell awkwardly looked like a fluke more than someone being out of position. Fortunately, he seemed fine. The long wait for a Christian Cage heel turn continues.
Schiavone once again encouraged fans to call their friends and let them know that it wasn’t too late to watch the main event. Excalibur announced Jungle Boy, Luchasaurus, Christian Cage, Matt Hardy, and Jeff Hardy vs. Adam Cole, Bobby Fish, Kyle O’Reilly, and The Young Bucks for Wednesday’s AEW Dynamite in Los Angeles…
A video package set up the main event… Justin Roberts stood in the ring and hyped the crowd for the main event. CM Punk made his entrance first. While Hangman Page made his entrance, Punk went to ringside and greeted Lars Frederiksen and a young fan who was with him. Roberts delivered in-ring introductions for the title match…
13. “Hangman” Adam Page vs. CM Punk for the AEW World Championship. Schiavone said things got out of control on Dynamite and said he was trying to wrap his head around what Page meant when he said he was trying to save AEW from Punk. Page and Punk met in the middle of the ring and went nose to nose a couple of times before locking up.
Page caught Punk with a forearm and had the first stretch of prolonged offense, which included hitting a few chops in the corner. Punk returned the favor with chops of his own and then whipped Page into the corner aggressively.
Page regained offensive control and held his arms out while playing to the crowd. Excalibur said it seemed like both men were booed if they played to the crowd. Page knocked Punk down with a rolling elbow. Schiavone said it seemed like Page was trying to show up Punk. A “Cowboy Shit” broke out as Page whipped Punk into the corner.
Page set up for a Buckshot Lariat. Punk got back to his feet and knocked Page off the apron with a forearm shot. Punk charged at Page on the floor and was popped up and powerbombed on the apron. Page went to the ropes and performed a flying clothesline that resulted in a two count.
Page tossed Punk to ringside and went to the ropes, but Punk cut him off. They jockeyed for position and slipped, but they got back in position and Punk executed a superplex, which Excalibur said came out of desperation. Punk delivered a running knee in the corner and the bulldogged Page. Punk followed up with a springboard lariat and received a mixed reaction from the crowd.
Page stuffed Punk’s Sharpshooter attempt and also avoided him when he set up for a GTS. Punk put Page down with a neckbreaker and covered him for a two count. A CM Punk chant started as he went up top. Page cut him off and knocked him to the floor with a punch. Page went to the top rope and moonsaulted onto Punk on the floor. Page came up holding his knee and then tossed Punk back inside the ring.
Page went for a Buckshot Lariat, but Punk blocked it and put him in a Sharpshooter. Page reached the ropes to break the hold and then sold knee pain while Schiavone recalled him clutching his knee after the earlier moonsault. Punk went for a Buckshot Lariat and slipped. Page hoisted him up for a GTS, but Punk avoided it. Punk ended up on the apron and threw a kick at Page.
Punk went for another GTS and slipped again, though he was able to follow through with the clothesline portion. There were some boos as Punk covered Page for a two count. Both men held their left knees. Punk motioned for the GTS while looking into the camera. Punk went for the move, but Page slipped away and tried himself, but Punk also avoided it. Punk went for a running knee in the corner. Page caught him and powerbombed him. Page hooked Punk’s legs, but Punk rolled through. Page hit Punk with the Deadeye for a near fall.
Page signaled for the GTS and received a mixed reaction. Page hoisted up Punk, who ended up grabbing the top rope. Punk slipped away and hit Page with a high roundhouse kick. Page came right back with a GTS for a great near fall. Page came up holding his knee again while Excalibur explained that the GTS was performed with the bad knee.
Page and Punk traded strikes in the middle of the ring. Punk ran the ropes and Page followed and ended up clotheslining him over the top rope and tumbling to ringside with him. Page tossed Punk over the timekeepers table. Page picked up the AEW Title belt and told Punk that it was his and he would never have it. The referee took the belt away and set it in a corner of the ring for God knows what reason.
With Punk back in the ring, Page went to the apron and tuned up the band. He went for the Buckshot Lariat, but Punk caught him. Punk set up for a GTS, but Page’s legs took out the referee. REF BUMP!!! Page slipped away and put Punk down with a clothesline. Page looked at the fallen referee and then looked at the AEW Title belt.
Page picked up the belt and wanted Punk to stand up. Punk remained on his knees and put his hands in front of his face. Page looked conflicted and tossed the belt back in a corner of the ring. Page went for a Buckshot Lariat and his knee buckled, allowing Punk to stuff it and hit the GTS. Punk covered Page and the referee recovered and made the three count.
CM Punk defeated “Hangman” Adam Page in 25:40 to win the AEW World Championship.
Punk sat on the mat and looked emotional while his music played. Punk got to his feet and had his hand raised. The crowd cheered. Punk dropped back to his knees and held the belt over his shoulder. Punk looked around the building and got emotional again. Punk stood up and held the belt over his head and yelled, “Let’s f—ing go.” Excalibur said Punk proved that he is the best in the world.
Powell’s POV: A good main event. Yes, there were some slips, but they recovered quickly and the crowd seemed to get more invested the deeper the match went. It was interesting that the fans seemed split and yet Punk’s win was very well received once he got the three count. It was cool to see Punk look so emotional afterward. The knee injury gave Page an out. I wasn’t a big fan of the ref bump because, well, it’s a ref bump in a big spot, but hopefully there’s a story to be told from Page not giving into the temptation of hitting Punk with the title belt. I’m not really sure what Page’s promo on Wednesday was about since this didn’t seem to be a Punk heel turn, but perhaps it will make more sense as they move forward.
Overall, this was a really long show, which some fans will love while others will think it’s overkill. I’d like to see AEW find the middle ground. There were two or three matches that really didn’t need to be on the card and a tighter card that leaves people wanting more is a good thing. That said, it was an enjoyable event. Let me know what you thought of the show by grading it and by voting for the best match in our post event polls below. Jake Barnett and I will be back later tonight with our AEW Double Or Nothing audio review for Dot Net Members (including our Patreon patrons).