It’s Monday and you know what that means: time for AEW Dark: Elevation with Tony Schiavone and Paul Wight.
Hangman Page defeated Bill Collier (3:37)
Page “doesn’t know it’s not Wednesday” according to his namebar. Collier got to look good last week against Jon Moxley and did the same here against Page. He got a one count with a delayed suplex and a high jumping legdrop. Despite the size difference, Page was able to muscle over Collier with a fallaway slam, followed up with a standing shooting star press. Collier was able to block the first attempt at a super frankensteiner, but Page got it on the second try, finishing things off with the buckshot lariat.
Collier has been pretty impressive thus far. After the match, Page gave him one of his beers in a a big vote of confidence.
Varsity Blonds (Brian Pillman Jr. and Griff Garrison) defeated Dean Alexander and Charlie Bravo (3:55)
Pillman hit a great spinning powerslam on Bravo. He and Garrison combined for the top rope dropkick/power bomb combination for the win.
Britt Baker (w/ Rebel) defeated Alex Gracia (:28)
They have added a blood motif to Baker’s entrance video. Baker blew the lid off Dark’s whole deal, calling Gracia the “enhancement talent” that she’s gonna blow right through. But, to make it fair, Baker got into the referee’s position to give Gracia a chance. So, Gracia took the dominant position and as soon as the bell rang, Baker instantly reversed it into the Lockjaw. Gracia tapped out. This was nothing as a match, but Baker is a one woman show.
Dark Order's 10 defeated Danny Limelight (6:01)
Limelight spent a good bit of the match working over 10’s arm. 10 came back with a clothesline and a spinebuster. 10 went for the full nelson, but the earlier work on the arm paid off and Limelight escaped with a judo throw. 10 came back with a pump kick and went for a deadlift powerbomb, but Limelight was ready and countered with a triangle choke. 10 escaped and got Limelight in the full nelson for the submission, upping his singles record this year to 9-1.
Big Swole defeated Jazmin Allure (3:20)
I enjoy Swole’s unique charisma. She took the fight to the floor and whipped Allure between the apron and the barricade. Back in the ring, she cinched in a camel clutch. Allure mounted a comeback and got a near fall after a clothesline and leg sweep. Swole caught Allure charging in the corner with a uranage. Swole finished off Allure with a tiger bomb into a Texas cloverleaf (shoutout to her trainer Dean Malenko) to get the submission.
Michael Nakazawa defeated Vary Morales (4:19)
Morales didn’t even get an entrance. Nakazawa was clad once again in a headset, AEW polo, and khakis.
This was a comedy match that has no place on a show designed to elevate talent. Nakazawa crotched Morales on the top rope and drug him across it, called the “Henti Slide." Morales came back with a dropkick and a crossbody to the floor. Nakazawa hit Morales with a laptop he carried out with him, followed by the 69 slam for the win. I fail to see how anyone was “elevated” here.
This match didn't need to exist. Giving Nakazawa matches (or wins) isn’t doing anything for anybody. I assume these are being given to Nakazawa so he looks like a threat for an upcoming match on Dynamite, but it would save everyone a lot of trouble to accept that no one is going to buy him as a threat against any name talent.
Lance Archer (w/ Jake Roberts) defeated Baron Black (2:53)
Archer brought Black to the ring with him after beating him up through the entrance and ont o the stage. Roberts joined Schiavone and Wight on commentary, but not for long as a chokeslam and the Blackout finished off Black in a complete squash. After the match, the two did some mic work directed at Sting which lasted longer than the match. Even though Archer views Sting as a hero, he is going to take him out.
Ryo Mizunami defeated Tesha Price (6:05)
Mizunami missed a chop in the corner and Price followed up by biting her arm followed by a bulldog for two. Price locked on a full nelson, but Mizunami escaped and powerslammed her for a near fall. A trio of legdrops got Mizunami another near fall. She got Price in a torture rack, but Price escaped with an eye rake and rolled up Mizunami for two. Price got another near fall off a sunset flip, but then charged into a clothesline. Mizunami finished Price with a spear to get the pin, ending the match just as it was starting to get going.
Max Caster (w/ Anthony Bowens) defeated Colt Cabana (w/ Evil Uno) (7:35)
Caster delivered both sick rhymes and sick burns on his way to the ring: “Your podcast sucked, Colt. I tried to listen.”
Cabana brought Evil Uno out from the back since Caster brought Bowens with him. Cabana went to monkey flip Caster out of the corner, but Caster held on to the ropes and Cabana’s momentum sent him crashing to the mat. Caster then took Cabana down by the arm and went to work on it with a Fujiwara armbar. Caster continued to attack the arm and used the weakness to cut off all of Cabana’s comebacks. Cabana managed a comeback and got a near fall with a splash off the middle rope.
Bowens jumped up on the apron and threw Caster's big chain across the ring to Evil Uno, who was also on the apron. As referee Aubrey Edwards went over to deal with Uno, Bowens then slid the boom box into the ring. Caster tripped Cabana headfirst into it and rolled him up for the win.
Private Party and Butcher and The Blade (w/ The Bunny and Matt Hardy) defeated Adam Price, Ryzin, D3 and Fuego del Sol
It’s 8:09 by my watch. A suplex into the Drag The Lake from the Butcher and Blade finished del Sol in another match that didn't need to be here.
Paul Wight interviewed John Silver at 8:16 EST in an interview that should have aired before Raw started if they wanted more people to see it. They talk about how Reynolds and Silver showed up at their first Dynamite as “local talent” but put on a good enough show to get recruited by the Dark Order. They also talked about Brodie Lee’s impact on Dark Order, Silver’s career, and the great match Silver had against Darby Allin for the TNT title. This was a great segment, but was placed too late.
Matt Hardy defeated Alan "5" Angels (5:57)
In the story of this match, Hardy kept going for the twist of fate but Angels kept escaping or countering the move. Finally, they went to the floor and Hardy crotched Angels in the ropes on the way back in. He then hit a DDT and locked in his new submission hold called the Leech (a double underhook choke and bodyscissors) to get the submission. This went three minutes too long. Post match, Hardy cut a promo where he promised to destroy Dark Order with the Hardy Family Office (HFO), directing some vitriol toward TNT Champion Darby Allin.
Scorpio Sky and Ethan Page defeated Matt and Mike Sydal (6:28)
Mike got in trouble and his knee was worked over by Page and Sky. Sky got a near fall after a Billy Robinson backbreaker and then worked over Mike's knee some more with a half crab. Mike was eventually able to escape and get the tag to Matt, who hit a brainbuster on Sky for a near fall. Page got the tag and took Matt down with a shoulderblock, but Sydal came back with a spinning kick for two.
Matt tagged in Mike and while the ref was trying to get Matt out of the ring, Scorpio kicked Mike in his bad leg. Page then hit his launching crucifix power bomb on Mike for the win.
This was another great one hour show that became bloated to an hour and forty minutes instead. Max Caster continues to be the MVP of the development brands.