The SmarK Rant for AEW Collision – 08.05.23
By Scott Keith on 5th August 2023
The SmarK Rant for AEW Collision – 08.05.23
So here’s the deal: Today was my daughter’s 13th birthday party, so I was off doing dad stuff until after supper and I just don’t have time to watch Summerslam tonight. Luckily I will have time to watch it on Sunday, so I’m gonna avoid spoilers as best as I can and do it in the morning. So hopefully I don’t get a million spoiler-y emails about how LA Knight won the briefcase and cashed it in on new World champion Jey Uso or whatever.
Live from Greenville, SC
Your hosts are Ian Riccaboni & Nigel McGuinness
AEW World tag team title: FTR v. The Brawlic Buddies (Big Bill & Brian Cage)
Cage beats on Cash with clubbing forearms to start and puts him down with a shoulderblock. Over to Dax, and Cage lays him out with a clothesline, but he tries a press slam and Dax falls on top for two. Dax rolls him up for two, but Cage bowls both FTR over and it’s time for Big Bill. They continue overpowering FTR and Bill drops an elbow on Cash for two, but FTR decides to try some double-teaming. They manage to get Cage out of the ring, but Bill won’t go up for the Shatter Machine and chokeslams Dax onto Cash before throwing them both out like garbage. Cage suplexes Cash onto the apron, THE HARDEST PART OF THE RING, and that gets two back in the ring. Cage with a dropkick to cut off Cash’s comeback and Bill continues beating on Cash before stopping to give us a dance routine. Showmanship! Bill continues beating (and dancing) on Cash outside, right in front of Mama Wheeler, who unfortunately can barely bothered to sell it before hauling off and slapping Bill. So Bill takes it out on Cash and drops him on the apron for more punishment, and back in for two. Bill with the HUMAN TORTURE RACK, but Cash reverses to a sunset flip, and Bill just blocks it. Small package is blocked, but a rollup finally gets two. And then Bill lays him out again with a clothesline. Man he’s gotten so much better in AEW and understands his role perfectly now.
Cage and Bill try a double-team in the corner, but Bill misses a charge and hits the post, and it’s hot tag Dax. He runs wild and fires away on the heels in the corner, and a flying forearm puts Bill on the floor. Cage with the superkick, but FTR hits a Steiner bulldog for two. They go for the stuff piledriver, but Cage just catches Wheeler and slams them both at the same time. Cage with a jackhammer while Bill hits Dax with a chokeslam, and Cage gets two off that. Bill tries for a Doomsday Device on Cash, but Dax breaks that up awkwardly, and Bill dumps them both to set up a tope con hilo from BRIAN CAGE of all people. Back in, Bill hits Wheeler with the big boot for two. Amazing how something as simple as sticking a couple of guys into a tag team can revitalize them. But back in the ring, FTR puts Bill on the floor and catches Cage with the Shatter Machine and that’s all she wrote at 15:00. Tremendously fun opener. ***1/2. This whole thing of “build up tag team challenger and then FTR has a great match with them” is the simple key to making this show great week after week.
Afterwards, Dax wants to be the greatest team of all time, and in order to do that, they need to beat the Young Bucks, which they shall do in Wembley Stadium.
Meanwhile, ROCK HARD JUICE ROBINSON and the CardBlade are interrupted by the real Jay White, who sadly destroys the cutout, but not before Juice uses it for the guns up. OK these idiots are winning me over a bit.
TBS title: Kris Statlander v. Mercedes Martinez
Ian goes with the Oasis reference with regards to Kris, although I’m gonna go with the HOT TAKE and note that the drug-fueled “more is more” nonsense of Be Here Now is their best album. Or at least my favorite. It’s like Tony Khan made a rock album and I unapologetically love it. Mercedes manages to beat Statlander down in the corner and follows with a pair of butterfly suplexes, but Kris escapes a third one. Mercedes slams her for two, however, and goes to back to beating on her. Statlander fights back in the corner and Mercedes puts her down again and goes to a chinlock. Kris fights out and slugs away in the corner, but Martinez dodges a charge and goes to work on her again. Mercedes with the camel clutch, but Statlander fights out of that and runs her into the corner to break. That gets one. They slug it out with forearms and Statlander makes the comeback with clotheslines before running into another forearm. She puts Martinez on the floor with a running knee, but tries a dive and lands on her face. Back in the ring, Mercedes necks her on the top rope, but Kris catches her with a powerslam for two. She goes up and Mercedes brings her down with the spider suplex and follows with a knee strike to the face for two. Stat counters a suplex for two and follows with a Michinoku driver for two. She tries a rollup and Mercedes slams her for two to counter. Martinez tries for the sleeper, but Statlander cradles for the pin at 10:21. And then Mercedes lays her out afterwards, which brings out Diamante to “save”, and they team up for a further beatdown on Statlander before Willow saves for real.
Meanwhile, Toni Storm is still very upset about losing the title. Women, am I right?
Samoa Joe v. Serpentico
Choke, goodbye, at 0:15.
Moving on, Joe is lacking in opponents for Wembley, so he throws out the challenge to CM Punk because winning by a rollup wasn’t a suitable way to end their feud.
Meanwhile, Andrade has his mask back.
Meanwhile, the Acclaimed sits down with Tony and discusses their ups and downs with Billy Gunn, and they’re gonna bring his boots to the ring in his memory. Well he’s not DEAD.
World Trios title: The House of Black v. Darius Martin, Action Andretti & Lee Johnson
Man haven’t they beaten up on those poor bastards enough by now? Malakai without his beard is kind of off-putting. The chosen stip for the match is that Julia Hart is banned from ringside. I still don’t like their chances. Brody tosses Darius around to start, but Darius gets a kneelift and necks Brody on the ropes. That sets up a flying bodypress, but Brody just stands there and takes it, as Darius bounces off him. Over to Black, and he gets double-teamed by the babyfaces and sent to the floor, before coming back with a big boot to Action on the railing. Back in the ring, he nails Andretti with a knee strike and SWEEPS THE LEG to put him down. Buddy comes in and works the arm before sending him flying into the announce table. And then Brody kicks more ass on the floor and back in for two. Buddy with an abdominal stretch and Andretti gets the ropes, but there are no rope breaks. So Buddy hits him with a lungblower and it’s back to Brody, who hits Andretti with a suplex and then chops him down again. Black drops a knee on him for two. Finally Andretti flips out of a suplex attempt and makes the hot tag to Lee Johnson, who gets to run wild and moonsaults into a double DDT on the House. He follows with a double springboard cutter, but misses a charge and gets walloped by the House in the corner. Brody cannonballs him, and the forearm looks to finish, but Andretti manages to save with a 450. He moonsaults the House outside and Darius splashes Brody for one. But then the House has had enough and Brody finishes Martin with the lariat at 9:15 to retain. This was great for what it was. ***1/4.
Next week: The House of Black v. CMFTR!
Meanwhile, QT and Harley try to seduce Powerhouse Hobbs back to the dark side with a gold chain, but he doesn’t want their help. But he does want the chain.
Meanwhile, Christian has brought his daughter to the show because he’s realized that he’s a mentor to younger wrestlers. So she asks for his belt and he has her kicked out of the arena. Fair.
Jay White v. Metalik
Jay does a whole thing where he goes to throw his shirt into the audience and then sends it to the Gunns instead, who are doing commentary at ringside with CardBlade. White with a DDT on Metalik for two and he tosses him outside, where ROCK HARD Juice Robinson gives him some motivational speech. Back in, that gets two while the Gunns mock Ian for being a nerd who knows stuff. WHAT A NERD. Jay with the half-crab and catapult under the ropes for two while the announcers discuss action figures and the Riccabone-Zone, but Metalik makes the comeback with a rana before Jay necks him on the top rope. White bails to the floor and Metalik moonsaults him. Back in, White escapes a moonsault and hits the cobra slam before finishing with the Blade Runner at 5:20. Wacky fun with the Bang Bang Gang. **
“Real World’s Title”: CM Punk v. Ricky Starks
JR is back on commentary here, although he’s still sounding tentative about being there. They trade hiptosses and Starks bails to the floor while the crowd is torn on how they feel about Punk and try to shout each other down. Starks works the arm and Punk takes him down and mocks him a bit, which probably won’t help his case with the fans. Starks takes him down with armdrags and Punks bails off that, allowing Starks to get some mockery of his own. Back in the ring, Starks beats on him in the corner and Punk tries for the GTS, but Starks escapes that and they both bump to the floor. Back in the ring, Punk takes over with the big legdrop, BROTHER, and Ian sarcastically notes “We’ve got all the classics tonight” while Nigel quotes Real American. They slug it out in the corner as Starks gets all pissed off, but Punk slugs him down and Starks gives him a cheapshot and tries to haul him out of the ring. But Punk gets the best of that one, running Starks into the railing and then beating on him outside. That draws the ire of SPECIAL ENFORCER Ricky Steamboat, who pulls Punk off and gives him what for. Back in the ring, Punk slugs away in the corner, but Starks drops him on the top rope and puts him on the floor with a baseball slide. Back in the ring, Starks with a back elbow and he goes up with a flying forearm for two. Punk fights out of a bodylock, but Starks runs him into the corner on either side before Punk hits a bodypress for two. Punk bails to the apron and comes back in with a sunset flip, but Starks grabs the ropes to block and then drops an elbow for two. Steamboat continues to specially enforce the rules out there to make sure Starks wasn’t grabbing the ropes again. Ricky with the ropewalk for two.
He goes to a neck vice on the mat, but a splash misses and Punk fights back with chops, only for Starks to roll him up for two. Ricky goes up and Punk cuts him off with a superplex, which gets two. JR notes that Punk has a reputation for being “a little cantankerous”, which is certainly one way to put it. Punk comes back with the running knee in the corner into the bulldog, which gets two. Punk goes up for the flying elbow, but Starks gets up way too soon and they improvise an ugly bodypress reversal thing, which gets two for Starks. Punk with another running knee, but Starks catches him this time and powerbombs him for two. Starks with another ropewalk, but Punk catches him for the GTS, and Starks escapes that and sends him into the post. But then Starks charges and hits the turnbuckle, and Punk rolls him up for two. High kick gets two. Starks reverses out of a piledriver to an Alabama slam and that gets two. They slug it out with forearms and the ref is bumped, which means it’s time for the SPECIAL ENFORCER to shine. So Starks immediately pins Punk with his feet on the ropes and Steamboat pushes them off. Punk with a rollup on Starks off that, and that gets the pin at 22:10 to retain. The rollup was kind of weak and I would have preferred a GTS for a more definitive end. But this was some great pro wrestling. ****1/4. And then Ricky shows sportsmanship by attacking Steamboat afterwards, whipping him with his own belt until Punk makes the save. So I guess this feud must continue. Punk’s got a lot on his plate right now.
God I love this show. Talk about exactly what I’m looking for in a wrestling show these days, this is it.