AEW World Champion Hangman Page defends the title against CM Punk in the main event of Sunday's Double or Nothing from Las Vegas, Nevada.
AEW Women's Champion Thunder Rosa defends against Serena Deeb, TBS Champion Jade Cargill defends against Anna Jay, and AEW Tag Team Champions Jurassic Express defend against both Ricky Starks & Powerhouse Hobbs and Keith Lee & Swerve Strickland.
In the men's Owen Hart Foundation final, Samoa Joe will take on Adam Cole while Britt Baker takes on Ruby Soho in the women's final.
MJF will face Wardlow with the latter's contract status on the line and Darby Allin will face Kyle O'Reilly in a pair of singles grudge matches.
Generations will clash as The Hardys take on The Young Bucks.
AEW's first Anarchy in the Arena match is set as the Jericho Appreciation Society battles Eddie Kingston, Santana, Ortiz, and Blackpool Combat Club's Jon Moxley & Bryan Danielson.
The rest of the show features Scorpio Sky, Ethan Page & Paige VanZant vs. Sammy Guevara, Frankie Kazarian & Tay Conti; House of Black vs. Death Triangle; and Hook & Danhausen vs. Tony Nese & "Smart" Mark Sterling on the pre-show.
The Buy-In report --
The first half of the Buy-In pre-show featured the typical assortment of video packages and general hype for the pay-per-view. I thought the Thunder Rosa vs. Serena Deeb package was particularly good, to the extent I wish it had been on TV in some fashion.
At half past the hour, Excalibur and Tony Schiavone ran down the show.
The Acclaimed made an unannounced entrance where Caster performed his rapping his schtick as usual. The Gunn Club were there, and Bowens called them "ass boys."
Taz joined commentary.
HOOK & Danhausen defeated Tony Nese & Smart Mark Sterling [5:57]
HOOK took Nese down right away and the heels regrouped. Danhausen tagged in and Nese opened himself up for a headlock before leveling him with a shoulder tackle. Danhausen used evasive maneuvers and attempted a curse before hitting a diving hurricanrana and cursing Sterling. The Sterling distraction was enough for Nese to take out Danhausen.
A suplex from Danhausen allowed him to reach HOOK for the tag. Nese wanted to tag out, but Sterling dropped off the apron, allowing HOOK to hit repeated suplexes. Nese tagged himself out and HOOK took out Sterling with an overhead throw. HOOK had Sterling beat but opted to tag in Danhausen for the pin.
AEW Double or Nothing report --
Justin Roberts introduced Jim Ross, who joined the commentary desk.
They started off the show with an ad for Draft Kings, which was strange.
MJF was booed out of the building during his entrance. The broadcast did cut to an "MJF -- where is my money?" sign.
Wardlow was escorted to the ring with no music from a holding cell backstage. He was cuffed with chains.
Wardlow defeated MJF [7:35]
This was exactly what it should've been. If you weren't "in the know," you wouldn't have any idea about all the news regarding MJF over the last day or so.
MJF powdered to the floor right at the bell. Wardlow turned his back on MJF and took a shot, but Wardlow shrugged it off and set up for the Powerbomb Symphony, forcing MJF to escape again. Wardlow stopped a sunset flip attempt and got MJF up for a powerbomb, but MJF bit his way out of it. Wardlow shrugged off more strikes until MJF just poked his eyes.
Wardlow caught MJF in powerbomb position on a leapfrog attempt. MJF turned it into a hurricanrana pin attempt for two, but when Wardlow kicked out, MJF sold as if his knee was injured. MJF put on the Dynamite Diamond Ring, but the official saw it and just took it from him. Wardlow stood over MJF as the spoiled brat pleaded his case.
MJF offered to quadruple Wardlow's pay, and they shook on it -- but Wardlow wouldn't let go. Wardlow started up the Powerbomb Symphony. Five powerbombs later, Wardlow covered, but let go of it right before the three count. After five more powerbombs, for a total of ten, Wardlow picked up the win.
– After the match, MJF was stretchered out. Wardlow still had no music.
Out on the ramp, Tony Schiavone announced to Wardlow that according to Tony Khan, he was officially #AllElite.
Caprice Coleman joined commentary.
The Bucks were introduced by a "Superkick Party" parody version of Elvis Presley's "Viva Las Vegas."
The Hardys (Jeff Hardy & Matt Hardy) defeated The Young Bucks (Matt Jackson & Nick Jackson) (w/ Brandon Cutler) [18:13]
Aside from a moment where it seemed like Jeff might've been injured or had his bell rung, this was a really good back-and-forth match with a classic Bucks formula.
The Matts started off. (Bear with me, both teams being brothers and each having a Matt on their team will make the recap somewhat unwieldy.) They performed counter wrestling until the younger brothers tagged in. Jeff and Nick went back-and-forth until Nick rolled to the floor and regrouped with Cutler. Nick tripped upon re-entry to the ring and the Hardys took out his brother.
The crowd chanted "Brandon Cutler," so Nick went out and shoved him in anger. Matt Hardy took out Matt Jackson with a clothesline and a suplex, then the Hardys dropped Nick onto his brother. Nick countered a step-up attack with an enziguiri before landing a superkick on Matt Hardy.
The Bucks isolated Jeff and beat him down with frequent tags. Jeff came back with a double clothesline, but Cutler pulled his brother off the apron, stopping Jeff from making the tag. Jeff avoided a Whisper in the Wind attempt from Matt Jackson and fired back with one of his own.
Matt Hardy got the hot tag and repeatedly drove the Bucks face-first into the turnbuckles. He then did the same to Cutler before hitting a Side Effect on Nick for two. Nick sent Matt Hardy to the floor and hit an X-Factor on Jeff before we got a short parade of moves from everyone. Hardy looked for a springboard, but Nick superkicked him off the ropes onto his fellow Hardy. Nick then landed a flipping senton onto the Hardys.
The Bucks hit Risky Business on Matt for two. Nick inadvertently hit his brother with a rising knee, then inadvertently cracked Cutler in the face out on the floor. Jeff landed a diving shoulder block on Nick as Matt Hardy hit a Side Effect on the apron.
The Hardys hit Poetry in Motion. Matt Jackson countered a Twist of Fate by slingshotting Matt Hardy into his brother, but Jeff countered on the top with a jawbreaker. Matt Jackson avoided the Swanton Bomb and hit a Twist of Fate followed by a Nick Twist of Fate for a near fall.
Jeff avoided the BTE Trigger as the Bucks cracked their knees together. The Bucks recovered and flattened both Hardys with superkicks. As the Hardys knelt, the Bucks laid in repeated superkicks, but the Hardys kicked out at two.
The Bucks turned the steel steps on their side and perched Jeff on them, but Matt Hardy popped up and hit a BT Bomb on Nick. Jeff placed Matt Jackson on the steel steps and landed a sick Swanton Bomb. Inside the ring, Matt Hardy hit the Twist of Fate for a great near fall.
Nick cradled Matt Hardy, but Hardy came back with a Side Effect and another Twist of Fate. Jeff climbed the ropes and landed a Swanton Bomb for the win.
A video aired of The Acclaimed and the Gunn Club partying in Vegas. It cut to Billy Gunn finding them all and being disappointed in them.
TBS Championship: Jade Cargill (c) defeated Anna Jay [7:52]
The match was terrible, and it didn't even have the manic energy that the Tay Conti match had at the previous pay-per-view. Athena's and Stokely Hathaway's debuts are the big developments.
Jay went for the Queenslayer early on, but Cargill returned fire with a fallaway slam. Cargill dominated briefly before Jay hit a superplex. Jay hit a hard lariat, but Cargill wouldn't go down, so a top-rope blockbuster finally took Cargill down. Cargill rolled to the floor to prevent a pin attempt.
Out on the floor, Jay sent Cargill into the steel steps. The Baddies (Kiera Hogan and Red Velvet) tried to get involved, but Jay DDTed them both. Back in the ring, Cargill went for Jaded, but Jay turned it around and landed a thrust kick.
Smart Mark Sterling, carrying a crutch from his Buy-In match, distracted the official. Jay grabbed the crutch and hit a Russian leg sweep through it for a near fall. John Silver ran out and hit Sterling with a brainbuster on the floor. Back in the ring, Cargill hit the Eye of the Storm for a near fall. Jay countered Jaded into the Queenslayers sleeper, but Jade powered out of it.
They jockeyed for position on the top rope, then Stokely Hathaway (formerly Malcolm Bivens in WWE) walked out and distracted Jay, allowing Cargill to hit a top-rope Jaded for the win.
– After the match, Kris Statlander ran out and confronted Cargill and the Baddies, then Athena (formerly Ember Moon in WWE) made her debut to even the numbers.
A video package hyped AEW & NJPW's upcoming Forbidden Door show.
Death Triangle came out with Alex Abrahantes and Penta's kid. PAC wore a half-Penta, half-Fénix mask. House of Black had face paint.
House of Black (Malakai Black, Brody King, & Buddy Matthews) defeated Death Triangle (PAC, Penta Oscuro, & Rey Fénix) [15:05]
This was an awesome all-out six-man tag between six great workers. The smoke and mirrors towards the finish may bother some.
Fénix and Black started off with a back-and-forth counter exchange. They avoided each other's signature heel kicks before staring each other down. Matthews and Penta tagged in, with the latter getting the better of the exchange with a thrust kick and a hurricanrana. PAC entered the match and had to face off with the giant King.
King sent PAC to the floor and set up for his big dive, but the two trios faced off in the middle of the ring before it all broke down. House of Black isolated Penta in the ring and Matthews took him out with a diving meteora, but PAC cut off Matthews with a poison rana and a running lariat. King flattened PAC with a black hole slam.
House of Black isolated PAC in their side of the ring. PAC avoided a corner cannonball from King and reached Fénix for the hot tag. Fénix fought off Black and Matthews on his own before he and his brother hit simultaneous thrust kicks on Matthews. They then landed simultaneous topes con giro on the House of Black.
A triple team splash on King got two. Fénix called for a suplex on King but instead launched off him with a dropkick. Matthews blocked a suicide dive and hit a suplex on the floor. PAC landed a Fosbury flop on Matthews. Black hit an Orihara moonsault on PAC. Penta hit a dive of his own. That left King, who sort of landed a tope con giro but didn't quite make it.
Back in the ring, House of Black crushed Fénix with the Dante's Inferno, but Death Triangle broke up the pin. Death Triangle came back and each hit thrust kicks on everyone. PAC hit a sheer drop brainbuster on Black, but Matthews broke up the pin. Penta stepped up off his brother to hit a destroyer on the apron, then the Lucha Bros hit a foot stomp DDT combo on King on the floor.
Black was alone in the ring against Death Triangle and ate three thrust kicks. The Lucha Bros wanted the foot stomp piledriver combo, but Black countered and hit the spin kick on Fénix. PAC cut Black off and set up for the Black Arrow, but Matthews stopped him. PAC recovered an hit a springboard 450 splash over Matthews onto Black.
PAC dispatched Matthews and crushed Black with a snap German suplex. Alex Abrahantes distracted the official and PAC kicked Black low. PAC set up for the Black Arrow, but the lights went out, and Julia Hart appeared and spit black mist into PAC's face. Black hit the spin kick on PAC to win.
– After the match, Hart celebrated with the House of Black.
Owen Hart Foundation Cup finals: Adam Cole defeated Samoa Joe [12:29]
This was solid, but it felt like a TV match -- nothing you wouldn't see on a random episode of Dynamite. Not exactly up to the standards of the finals of a prestigious tournament.
Joe peppered Cole with right hands early on. He dominated Cole up and down the ring with various types of strikes. He brought Cole to the floor and continued to beat him down until Cole stopped Joe in his tracks with a superkick and drove his shoulder into the ring post.
Cole dismantled Joe's left arm until Joe countered a Panama Sunrise attempt and drove Cole's knees into the mat. Cole cut Joe off with an enziguiri, but Joe planted him on a corner attack. Joe hit a running crossbody for two and then a snap powerslam for two more. After a brief bit of offense, Joe leveled Cole with a lariat for yet another two count.
Joe set up for the Muscle Buster, but Cole fought out and hit a running high kick for two. He followed it up with a backstabber for two more. Joe fought out of a crossface attempt and hit a powerbomb before transitioning into an STF. Cole had to fight to reach the ropes and force a break.
Bobby Fish ran down and wrenched Joe's injured arm over the top rope. Joe avoided the Boom and locked on a rear naked choke, but a distraction from Fish forced him to break it. He flattened Cole with a chop, but then Cole came back with superkicks before lowering the Boom for the win.
Baker had Fozzy guitarist Rich Ward play during her entrance.
They got Rancid for Ruby Soho's entrance.
Owen Hart Foundation Cup finals: Dr. Britt Baker, D.M.D. defeated Ruby Soho [14:51]
The first 10 minutes of this were absolutely nothing. The closing stretch ended up being pretty great. HOWEVER, the post-match was touching and one of the best and most essential wrestling segments of the year.
Neither woman could really establish an advantage at the start, then Baker was able to lay in some kicks. Soho returned fire with an arm drag and clotheslines before hitting a running dropkick out on the outside. The landing injured Soho's ribs, which Baker took advantage of inside the ring.
Baker continued to target Soho's midsection, wrapping her around the ring post and taunting her. She locked on almost a grounded octopus hold, then when Soho powered out, Baker downed her with a forearm smash.
They fought on the top rope, where Soho got the upper hand and hit a superplex. They traded forearms in the center of the ring, leading to a double down. They both teased bit moves until Soho hit a back suplex. She climbed the ropes and landed a senton bomb for two.
Once again, they jockeyed for position on the top rope. Baker dumped her down and hit the curb stomp for a good near fall. She put on the glove and called for the Lockjaw, but Soho rolled out of it. Baker caught Soho and went for it again, and after a struggle, Soho transitioned into a pinning predicament for a near fall. She hit No Future and then locked on a Sharpshooter. After a long fight, Baker finally reached the ropes to break.
Soho landed a victory roll, but Baker turned it around into a cradle of her own for the win.
– After the match, Adam Cole came out and celebrated with Baker. Schiavone spoke on the ramp and introduced Dr. Martha Hart, Owen's widow and the head of the Owen Hart Foundation. She was escorted by Tony Khan.
Hart thanked the crowd for the warm welcome. There was a long "Thank you, Martha!" chant. She said the tournament was to celebrate the craftsmanship and skills of her late husband. Finally, he can be celebrated within the squared circle. She thanked AEW, the competitors, her children, the Foundation committee, and the fans for making the tournament a success. Hart congratulated the winners, and said that for next year's tournament, she wants to see everyone wearing a beautiful hat like her extravagant one.
Both Cole and Baker were presented with beautiful Owen Hart Cup championship belts with pink trim as well as the Cup itself.
American Top Team (Scorpio Sky, Ethan Page, & Paige VanZant) (w/ Dan Lambert) defeated Sammy Guevara, Frankie Kazarian, & Tay Conti [11:40]
This was very "sports entertainment," but the biggest takeaway for me was how impressive VanZant looked in her limited action.
Kazarian and Sky faced off at the start, but Guevara tagged himself in. Page joined him and downed him with a back elbow. He went for the Ego's Edge, but Guevara turned it into a hurricanrana and dropkicked Page into the corner. Page pressed Guevara up and hit a powerslam for two. Guevara regained control, but he and Kazarian had miscommunication on a tag, allowing Sky to beat him down.
Conti raked Sky's back, allowing Guevara to hit a jumping cutter. Guevara tried to get on the same page as Kazarian, and they worked together to isolate Sky. A distraction from Page allowed Sky to hit a flatliner, but Conti knocked VanZant off the apron before she could go for a tag.
Guevara and Conti celebrated, but Kazarian wanted a tag. Guevara was just completely heeling it up with his antics, and Kazarian had enough, shoving him. Sky escaped and reached VanZant for her first action of the match. She took down Conti and laid in ground and pound before hitting clotheslines. She then hit a back handspring elbow.
VanZant wanted the TKO, but Guevara broke it up, so VanZant landed a body shot and a tilt-a-whirl DDT. She sent Conti face first into Guevara's junk, then hit a Michinoku Driver for two. Conti came back with a judo takedown and bicycle kicks. After a back-and-forth exchange, Conti hit a knee facebuster.
Guevara and Conti made out in the ring, and ended up surrounded by American Top Team. Kazarian opted to leave them high and dry. Guevara made a one-man comeback, which gave Kazarian a chance to re-enter the fray with a slingshot cutter for two. Guevara had enough, but he inadvertently struck Conti, allowing Sky to hit the TKO for the win.
– Guevara and Kazarian can never challenge for the TNT Championship again as long as Sky holds it.
Kyle O'Reilly defeated Darby Allin [10:38]
Not everything landed perfectly, but these two worked insanely hard and did some incredibly cool and entertaining stuff, resulting in what was maybe the best match of the night thus far.
O'Reilly dominated Allin from the jump. He landed a sick knee right away and went for an armbar. They showed a replay of the knee and it definitely landed. Allin came back with a shotgun dropkick and a Code Red for two. He chopped out O'Reilly's leg and hit a Scorpion Death Drop.
Allin landed a knee of his own and sent O'Reilly to the floor. He tried to follow it up with one of his ridiculous topes, but he messed up somehow and came up short. Allin was bleeding a lot from the mouth. He went for the tope again, but O'Reilly caught him and turned it into a guillotine on the floor.
Upon re-entry to the ring, Allin hit a top-rope frankensteiner and locked on the Last Supper pinning predicament for a near fall. O'Reilly came back with stiff shots and hit a vertical brainbuster for two. He went for the cross armbreaker again, but couldn't break the S-grip, so he instead opted for an ankle lock. Allin transitioned and turned it into a Scorpion Deathlock.
Allin hit a dragon screw over the ropes and landed a Coffin Drop as O'Reilly was caught. Back in the ring, Allin went for another Coffin Drop, but O'Reilly turned it into an armbar. Allin cradled O'Reilly to force an escape. They starched each other with strikes, leading to a double down.
O'Reilly choked Allin with his chain and landed a soccer kick, but Allin kicked out at one. He hit a second soccer kick for two. A third soccer kick followed by a diving knee drop gave O'Reilly the win.
AEW Women's World Championship: Thunder Rosa (c) defeated Serena Deeb [16:52]
Aside from maybe the steel cage match where Rosa won the title, this was probably the best AEW women's title match since Hikaru Shida's reign.
They performed a nice back-and-forth technical wrestling exchange at the start. Rosa locked on a Romero special, then they continued to wrestle around. Rosa hit Dustin Rhodes' drop down right hand and sent Deeb to the floor, but Deeb avoided a baseball slide and whipped Rosa into the ring post. She followed it up with a neckbreaker over the ropes.
Deeb hit another neckbreaker for two. She used the ropes for leverage and continued to target Rosa's neck. Rosa powered out of a neck crank and they traded strikes in the center of the ring. Rosa got the upper hand and whipped Deeb face first into the turnbuckle. She followed it up with double knees and a running dropkick.
Rosa hit a northern lights suplex bridge for two. Deeb came back and locked on an octopus hold. She turned it into a flipping neckbreaker for two. Rosa countered a leg sweep attempt into a crossface, but Deeb cradled her way out of it. Deeb locked on a stretch muffler, but Rosa fought out of it and smashed Deeb's knee against the mat. Simultaneous clotheslines led to a double down.
Out of the corner, Rosa hit a diving double stomp to the back and the Fire Thunder Driver for a near fall. Deeb chopped out Rosa's leg and applied a figure four leglock. They traded slaps while Deeb had the hold locked on. Rosa rolled to the floor to break the hold, but upon re-entry, Deeb hit a dragon screw over the ropes.
Deeb hit the Deeb-Tox, but Rosa got her foot on the ropes during the pin attempt. She went for the Serenity Lock, then opted for a powerbomb before applying a Texas Cloverleaf. Rosa reached the ropes to break the hold. Deeb wanted the Deeb-Tox again, but Rosa went for a cradle to break it.
Rosa cracked Deeb with a high kick, then hit a superplex into the Fire Thunder Driver for the win.
Justin Roberts introduced this by saying "shit's about to hit the fan." The match is anything goes.
Anarchy in the Arena: Jericho Appreciation Society (Chris Jericho, Jake Hager, Daniel Garcia, Matt Menard, & Angelo Parker) defeated Jon Moxley, Bryan Danielson, Eddie Kingston, Santana, & Ortiz [22:40]
Remember Stadium Stampede? This was like that, except everything was live, and there was an edge to it that led to as much intensity as any match on American wrestling TV. It was absolutely incredible, one of the best matches in AEW history.
They immediately started brawling everywhere as "Wild Thing" continued to play, which was pretty sweet. There was so much going on at the same time that it's difficult to relay it all. Moxley produced a fork at one point. Menard bled a lot as he brawled with Kingston. Jericho tried to escape on a scooter, so Moxley locked him in a rear naked choke.
Finally inside the ring, Santana and Ortiz worked together to take out Hager. Keep in mind, "Wild Thing" was playing over the loudspeakers throughout the entire brawl. Jericho finally smashed the sound board, stopping "Wild Thing" from playing.
Moxley landed a diving double sledge on Jericho. Santana and Ortiz hit a the Street Sweeper on Hager through two tables out on the floor. Moxley attacked Jericho with a camera. Kingston and Menard attacked each other with mustard at the concession area. Danielson sent Parker face-first into a camera lens.
Garcia hit a piledriver on the steel steps. Practically everyone had a crimson mask. Parker smashed Danielson with the ring bell. Moxley threw a cooler in Jericho's face. Garcia and Kingston brawled out on the concourse, where Garcia hit a low blow and dragged Kingston with a belt tied around his neck.
Jericho locked on the Walls on top of a table, which broke under the pressure. Moxley locked on a figure four on the ramp. Garcia hit a shining wizard over some furniture. Danielson laid in Yes kicks on Hager, but Hager suplexed him on the ramp.
Moxley unhooked the entire top rope and low blowed Jericho with the turnbuckle. Some dudes were fighting in an elevator as Danielson and Moxley beat down Jericho and Hager with turnbuckles in the ring. Jericho came back with chair shots on Moxley, but Moxley returned fire with the Regal Knee. Hager applied an ankle lock on Danielson.
2point0 were set up on tables as Santana and Ortiz set up a tall ladder. They each hit diving splashes on opposite sides. Jericho sprayed a fire extinguisher in Moxley's face. Moxley/Danielson and Jericho/Hager exchanged forearms in the ring. Blackpool Combat Club got the upper hand and laid in overhead elbows before locking on their respective submissions.
Kingston showed up on the ramp with a can of gasoline. He doused Jericho in gasoline but hit Danielson with it too, leading to them brawling. Moxley tried to break Kingston and Danielson up, but Jericho hit everyone with chair strikes. Hager sent Moxley backwards onto a barbed wire board perched on a table, which didn't break, then a Judas Effect wiped out Kingston.
Jericho whacked Danielson with the turnbuckle pad, but Danielson kicked out for a great near fall. Danielson fought off both Jericho and Hager with Yes kicks. He hit the Busaiku Knee on Hager, then hit it on Jericho through a chair for another great near fall -- the crowd was sure that was it.
Danielson laid in more kicks on Jericho before leveling him with a buzzsaw. He tried to kick Jericho's head in, but Hager took Danielson out with Floyd the Bat. Jericho locked on the Walls as Hager strangled Danielson with a ring rope, leading to him passing out and giving Jericho Appreciation Society the victory.
Andrade El Idolo was in an office. He said he wasn't here in AEW to lose, and A.F.O. are losers. Jose the Assistant had a contract ready, and there was a knock at the door. Former ROH and CMLL star Rush El Toro Blanco came in, and they performed the Ingoberable pose.
Men of the Year and Dan Lambert were backstage and asked how they felt about the match earlier. They all said they felt good. Page is excited to be done with "those pieces of trash." Sky asked, "Who's next?" Dante Martin walked up and challenged Sky. Sky said he'd give him the match in SoCal.
Jungle Boy & Luchasaurus (c) (w/ Christian Cage) defeated Team Taz (Ricky Starks & Powerhouse Hobbs) and Swerve Strickland & Keith Lee [17:07]
An excellent three-way tag match. I'd put this as even a notch better than the three-way tag title match from Revolution.
This was under two-in, one-out rules. Jungle Boy landed a dive right away, and he and Luchasaurus hit a double team elbow drop for two. Hobbs and Swerve tagged in, and the big man leveled Swerve with a lariat. Lee and Swerve worked together to take out Hobbs. Jungle Boy tagged in and used a hurricanrana to send Swerve to the floor. He hit two suicide dives, but Keith Lee caught him on the third and powerbombed him onto Luchasaurus.
Hobbs tagged back in and he and Starks beat down Jungle Boy. Starks performed a rope-walk, but Jungle Boy pulled him down and crotched him. Jungle Boy tried to tag Luchasaurus, but he was incapacitated, so Swerve was able to tag back in. Swerve took out Hobbs with a diving uppercut and dumped Starks onto Jungle Boy and Luchasaurus.
Lee assisted Swerve on an escalera moonsault off Lee's chest onto the three on the floor. Hobbs popped Swerve up, but Swerve turned it into a hurricanrana and his jumping thrust kick for two. Luchasaurus tagged in and ran wild on everyone, taking out Team Taz with a double clothesline.
The three big men squared off. Luchasaurus went for a double chokeslam, but Hobbs and Lee turned it into a combo chokeslam of their own. Lee dumped Hobbs to the floor and landed a tope con giro onto everyone. Luchasaurus powered him up into something of a slam and Lee kicked out at one.
Luchasaurus and Lee traded strikes in the center of the ring. Hobbs took them both out, leading to Starks and Jungle Boy tagging in. Starks pinned Jungle Boy with his feet on the ropes, and Christian pushed them off, leading to Hobbs sending Christian into the steel steps. Jungle Boy took out Hobbs but ran into a spear from Starks for a great near fall.
Starks then hit a slingshot Roshambo, but Luchasaurus broke up the pin at the last second. Hobbs hit a spinebuster, but Swerve hit a pop-up stomp on Hobbs. Luchasaurus inadvertently booted Jungle Boy and was pounced out of the ring by Lee. Swerve and Lee hit a doomsday double stomp, but Hobbs broke up the pin for another good near fall.
Starks hit Lee with the FTW Championship. Jungle Boy landed a thrust kick on Swerve. Starks wanted to use the belt again, but Christian dragged him out of the ring. Swerve rolled up Jungle Boy for a close near fall. Jungle Boy avoided the Swerve Stomp and he and Luchasaurus hit the Thoracic Express to win and retain.
– After the match, Christian celebrated with the champions.
AEW Dynamite (6/1) lineup:
- The Undisputed Elite (Adam Cole, Matt Jackson, Nick Jackson, Kyle O'Reilly, & Bobby Fish) vs. Jungle Boy, Luchasaurus, Christian Cage, & The Hardys (Jeff Hardy & Matt Hardy)
AEW World Championship: CM Punk defeated Hangman Page (c) [25:55]
Instant classic AEW main event. I don't think it's necessarily in the conversation for the best matches in company history, but I thought it was pretty much perfectly booked and executed from start to finish. The crowd was unbelievable.
They stared each other down at the bell. Punk drove Page into the ropes and we got a deafening dueling "Let's go Hangman -- CM Punk!" chant. They traded overhand chops. Punk pie-faced Page with his wrist tape as it got a little chippy. They traded shoulder blocks and then chops. Page landed a hard forearm smash and stomped Punk down in the corner.
Punk returned fire with chops. A Russian leg sweep got two. Punk maintained control until a diving crossbody was turned into a fallaway slam. Page followed it up with a plancha to the floor. He drove Punk's face into the steel steps. Back in the ring, Page posed, and it genuinely seemed to be 50/50 cheers and boos for him.
Page cut off a flurry of strikes with a huge discus elbow. He set up for the Buckshot Lariat and implored the crowd to get behind him, but Punk exploded up and sent Page flying into the barricade. Page recovered and powerbombed Punk onto the corner of the apron. He followed it up with a diving clothesline for two.
On the top rope, Page teased an Orihara moonsault, but Punk stopped him and turned it into a superplex. Punk hit a dropkick followed by his rising corner knee into a bulldog. He kept up the offense with a springboard lariat. Punk wanted the Sharpshooter, but Page fought out; Punk was able to keep up his run with a swinging neckbreaker.
Punk climbed the ropes, but Page pushed him off to the floor and finally landed the Orihara moonsault. Page set up for the Buckshot, but Punk reversed it into a Sharpshooter. Page crawled and eventually reached the ropes. Punk went for the Buckshot, Page went for the GTS, and they wrestled to a bit of a stalemate.
On the apron, Punk hit a roundhouse kick and went for a Buckshot. He hit it for a two count, but he absolutely stumbled on the attempt and it didn't look good. Punk called for the GTS. Page countered out of it and caught Punk on a knee strike attempt, hitting a Last Ride powerbomb and then a Deadeye for a good near fall.
Page mocked Punk's "go to sleep" pose and went for the GTS. Punk fought out and hit a high kick, but Page fired up and hit the GTS for a good near fall.
They traded forearms from a kneeling position, then stood up. Page clotheslined Punk over the top rope and they both spilled to the outside. He then tossed Punk over the timekeeper's table and grabbed the belt, yelling "This is mine! You will never have it!"
Page set up for the Buckshot yet again, but Punk turned it into a GTS attempt. During the attempt, Page's feet hit the official and knocked him down for a ref bump. Page took out Punk with a lariat.
With the referee down, Page considered using the belt as a weapon. He picked it up and demanded Punk get up. Punk knelt and put his hands up, looking very vulnerable. Page instead opted to drop the belt and go for the Buckshot, but Punk turned it into the GTS for the win.
After the first half of the PPV, I was considering whether this was one of the weakest major shows in AEW history, as only the House of Black/Death Triangle match really lived up to expectations. Everything from then on was awesome, though, including a unique and stiff O'Relly/Allin match, a (finally) great women's title match, a once-in-a-lifetime brawl, a spotfest three-way tag, and a classic main event. When it really mattered, AEW knocked it out of the park yet again.