Date: October 6, 2021
Location: Liacouras Center, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Commentators: Jim Ross, Tony Schiavone, Excalibur
Believe it or not, there is a big match this week as it’s time for the return of the Casino Ladder Match. That means another Joker entry, which could be a nice surprise. Other than that, we slowly continue on the way to Full Gear, which is going to need some match announcements. Let’s get to it.
Super Elite vs. Christian Cage/Jungle Boy/Luchasaurus/Bryan Danielson
That would be Kenny Omega/Adam Cole/Young Bucks. Jungle springboard armdrags Nick into a dropkick to start and then hands it off to Cage. Some right hands in the corner have Cole in trouble and it’s back to Jungle for a sliding kick to the face. Cole takes over on Jungle though and hands it back to Omega for a springboard elbow to the back. Jungle manages to crotch Nick on top and holds onto Matt’s arm while bouncing on the top to crotch Nick even more.
Danielson comes in to kick and chop away at Matt’s chest, followed by Luchasaurus getting in kicks of his own. Everything breaks down with Jungle missing a slingshot dive to the floor. Brandon Cutler sprays Cage in the eye though and it’s an Indytaker to Cage outside. That’s going to be it for Cage, who has to be taken out, leaving this as a handicap match. Back in and the Bucks give Cole the double kiss but Jungle gets in a shot to Omega for a breather. Danielson comes in for the big slugout with Omega, with the latter being taken into the corner for the kicks to the chest.
There’s the super hurricanrana for two on Omega with a bunch of saves being made. Everything breaks down and it’s a parade of secondary finishers until Danielson gets Omega in the Cattle Mutilation. Nick breaks that up with a Swanton but it’s Luchasaurus firing off kicks. The series of dives tot he floor is capped off by Omega, with Cole teasing a dive but posing instead. Luchasaurus chokeslams him to set up the standing moonsault but Cole hits Luchasaurus low.
The Elite tries a quadruple powerbomb on Luchasaurus but falls down, leaving everyone to stand around until Jungle hits all of them. A double superkick into the Panama Sunrise gets two, with Danielson making the save (read as Matt throws Danielson into the cover for the save). The Affirmative Kicks rock Omega until Danielson is kicked to the floor. The four man BTE Trigger finishes Jungle at 17:58, with JR complaining about all four being in the ring at the same time.
Rating: B. It was action packed and rather exciting, though there were some spots in there that didn’t exactly look great. That is probably because, as tends to be the case, they tried to pack in too many things. This is a match that could have been a bit better if they hadn’t crammed as much in,
Jon Moxley says no one can pin him or make him submit so now it’s time to put ladders in the ring. He’s used to the crazy though, because he has a three month old at home and she’s nuts too. This is his city and that is his belt so he’s winning tonight.
Here’s CM Punk to a huge reaction for a chat. Punk asks if anyone around here is tired yet and can’t believe he has Michael Jordan shoes. He talks about how he moved to Philadelphia in 2002, wrestled part of the week and trained wrestlers the rest of the week because he loved wrestling. Using the money he made in Philadelphia, he bought an iPod and a laptop because he was rich. He wasn’t rich because of the money but because he was in a wrestling culture.
Now he is back and he isn’t tired of how he is feeling. He wanted to give it back, so you can have your pick: he’ll wrestle tonight or he’ll buy everyone cheese steaks (Punk: “Is it cheese steak or cheesecake?”). The fans pick wrestle so if Daniel Garcia has the fortitude, he can meet Punk on Rampage. Punk goes to leave….and gives his Jordans to a fan dressed as Orange Cassidy. JR: “Don’t worry kid. You’ll grow into them.”
Arn Anderson is outside Cody Rhodes’ house and is burning something in a barrel. Cody comes out and talks about how Arn turned his back on him but Arn cuts him off to say that Cody turned on them. Cody can have his multi million dollar houses and his reality TV shows, but he might as well just paint a star on his face. Arn slaps him in the face to prove his point.
TNT Title: Sammy Guevara vs. Bobby Fish
Fish is challenging in his debut. Some kicks to the chest have Guevara in early trouble but Guevara flips over him and hits his own kick to the face. An enziguri in the corner sets up a springboard, which is broken up as well. Back up and they slug it out with Fish kicking him down as we take a break.
We come back with Guevara hitting a running elbow to the face but Fish kicks him down again. Sammy kicks him off the top but gets crotched down, setting up Fish’s super Falcon Arrow for a delayed two. A suplex into the corner gives Fish two more but Guevara kicks him away and hits the GTH to retain at 9:17.
Rating: C+. Not a classic match here but Fish looked good in his debut and was a smart first title defense for Guevara. I’d rather they bring in someone with some name status who can work well with anyone rather than having a regular star take a loss. Good match here and they didn’t go too long either.
Post match here is American Top Team to surround the ring and beat Sammy down. Fuego del Sold runs in for the save but gets beaten down so here are Chris Jericho and Jake Hager for the real save. Jericho manages to knock Junior Dos Santos (former UFC Heavyweight Champion) to the floor so he and Hager can stand tall.
Dan Lambert says cut the music but has to wait for the fans to finish Judas. Lambert talks about how Jericho has been around for a long time but this isn’t his time. AEW is heading to Miami on October 15, the home of American Top Team and Jorge Mazvidal. So how about a six man tag with the Men of the Year and Junior Dos Santos vs. the Inner Circle? Jericho says he didn’t hear a thing Lambert said….and then Jericho’s mic gives out. Jericho gets another mic and he promises to beat the living s*** out of Lambert and his team. Very nice save there if Lambert couldn’t be heard in the arena.
The Acclaimed raps about their Tag Team Title shot on Rampage.
Tony Schiavone is in the ring for a special announcement. Dynamite is moving to TBS on January 5 and that means we are going to have something special. Tony shows us the new TBS Title, which will be in the Women’s division, starting with a tournament to crown the first champion. As long as the NWA Women’s Title is gone, that should be fine.
Jim Ross sits down with Darby Allin, who talks about how MJF got to him last week. Yes he was there when his uncle drove drunk and got killed and that’s why he paints half of his face. Allin faced death that night but lived to talk about it and MJF isn’t going to break him.
Darby Allin vs. Nick Comoroto
Allin dives on the rest of the Factor to start and strikes away in the corner. We take an early break and come back with….Allin hitting the Coffin Drop for the pin at 4:43. Well that happened.
Post match QT Marshall comes in with a cutter to Sting, who pops up for the Scorpion Death Drop.
The Dark Order is back together, with Evil Uno saying the team can make the decisions. They agree to start voting as a family, with the first vote being about where Alan Angels has to wear a mask again. Anna Jay breaks up another fight and they’re good again.
Here is Dante Martin for a chat. He has proven he can hang with anyone and now he wants to fight anyone willing to get in the ring with him. The lights go out and here is Malakai Black (JR: “He kicks people’s heads off for a living!”) to spray black mist and hit Black Mass. The lights go out again and come back with Martin gone. Black says the House of Black accepts and then leaves.
Here is Ricky Starks to talk about how the FTW Title was defended right here in this very city. He’s more of a champion than the previous champion Brian Cage, who isn’t here tonight. That’s a shame as Starks was going to challenge him to a Philly street fight….and here is Cage to start the brawl. Team Taz pulls Starks to safety.
Various women say they’re winning the TBS Title.
Hikaru Shida vs. Serena Deeb
If Shida wins, she gets a trophy for winning 50 matches. They take turns throwing each other down to start before trading wristlocks. Shida flips away though and it’s a standoff until she kicks Deeb down. The right hands in the corner set up a dropkick in the corner (as in Shida is hammering away on the middle rope and then jumps up for the middle rope dropkick). They head outside with Shida loading up the chair but Deeb throws it underneath the ring. A neckbreaker over the ropes rocks Shida and we take a quick break.
Back with Shida grabbing a front facelock and swinging Deeb around for a painful look. Shida hits a missile dropkick for two but the Octopus is countered. The Deebtox is countered as well and Shida hits a running knee. Shida dives onto the rocked Deeb, who comes back with a running knee of her own. Deeb goes after the leg but misses a chop block, allowing Shida to hit a sitout Dominator for two. A Falcon Arrow gives Shida the same but Deeb is right back with the Deebtox for two of her own. The Serenity Lock finishes Shida at 10:19.
Rating: B-. Good stuff here, as I like the idea of making Shida work for the 50th win. That could take her awhile to accomplish and it could make for something interesting, though I wouldn’t stretch it out that long. It’s great to have Deeb back too, as she really is one of the best around these days.
Post match, Deeb hits Shida in the head with the trophy.
MJF has challenged Darby Allin to a match on Dynamite next week. Allin accepts and looks at a limo, seemingly thinking MJF is inside. Instead a masked man jumps him and another takes the camera. More masked men come in and beat him down, including an F10 onto a bunch of barricades. Another masked man (clearly MJF) gets out of the limo to choke Allin with the skateboard. The Pinnacle (with Schiavone saying that’s who it is) leaves in the limo. Commentary is DISGUSTED by these developments.
Lio Rush talks about how much he likes Dante Martin but he’s also a businessman. Rush thinks Martin needs to rush towards Malakai Black’s challenge and they should talk soon.
Britt Baker likes the idea of the TBS Title tournament (though she was hoping for the Cartoon Network Title) because some of these b****** might leave her alone. Go have your tournament and she’ll be sitting here on top.
Casino Ladder Match
The entrants are coming in intervals and there is another Joker, though you can win at any time, even before all of the entrants are in. First up we have Orange Cassidy at #1 (with the Philadelphia 76ers mascot) and Pac at #2, with Cassidy taking the sunglasses off early. Pac knocks him down to start so Cassidy puts his hands behind his back and crosses his legs. The ladder is brought in but Pac stops to plant him with a brainbuster.
Andrade El Idolo is in at #3 but Pac dropkicks a ladder into him before Andrade can get in. Pac goes up but Andrade jumps up to cut him off, setting up a sunset bomb. Cassidy is back up with the lazy kicks and a headscissors but Matt Hardy is in at #4. The Side Effect drops Cassidy, who is back up to prevent Matt from climbing.
We take a break and come back with Lance Archer in at #5 and splashing Cassidy on a ladder bridged into another one. Archer teases going up but Jon Moxley is in at #6, with Moxley meeting him in the crowd. Moxley pelts a chair at Archer’s head and they fight to ringside, where Archer hits Moxley with the chair as well. Back in and Cassidy Orange Punches Archer to slow him down but Moxley takes Cassidy down.
A running dropkick into the ladder into Archer sends him into the corner and it’s……Hangman Page in at #7 as the Joker. Page goes right at Moxley for the slugout and cleans house until Pac gets in a chair shot. Pac puts Page on a table and goes up the ladder but has to deal with Andrade. A headbutt drops Andrade off the top onto a chair onto a ladder at ringside, allowing Page to go up and slug it out with Pac. The super Deadeye off the ladder drives Pac through a table (that was terrifying) but Page comes up favoring his knee.
Moxley takes Page out with the Paradigm Shift but Cassidy meets him on top of the ladder. Hardy shoves the ladder over to break up the fight and legdrops Cassidy through a table. Archer cleans house again but Page is back up with the Buckshot Lariat (thankfully the knee seems ok). The climb is on until Moxley chairs Page in the back. Moxley goes up with Page but gets knocked down, allowing Page to pull down the poker chip (because it’s a poker chip) to win at 17:08.
Rating: B. They had the high spots and they had the big pop. I’m still not sure if I like the idea of the staggered entrances but it’s certainly different than what everyone else does, which can be a positive. This was the stunt show you were expecting and it’s certainly interesting to see Page get the title shot. I’m not sure how that is going to go, but they couldn’t just leave that unresolved.
Overall Rating: B+. This was a show that felt designed for Philadelphia and that is not a bad thing. They had an action packed card with a bunch of fan favorites and pandering to the crowd, which kept things from possibly getting ugly in a hurry. It was another very fun night and that’s what AEW does best. They need to start building up Full Gear, but at this point that just means announcing what should be a pretty clear card. Another strong night this week, which shouldn’t be a surprise.
Super Elite b. Christian Cage/Bryan Danielson/Luchasaurus/Jungle Boy – BTE Trigger to Jungle Boy
Sammy Guevara b. Bobby Fish – GTH
Darby Allin b. Nick Comoroto – Coffin Drop
Serena Deeb b. Hikaru Shida – Serenity Lock
Hangman Page won the Casino Ladder Match
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