AAW The Art Of War 1/20/2018
MJF takes on NJPW star, Juice Robinson. Paco looks to prove himself against ACH. Myron Reed takes on Teddy Hart in singles action. WRSTLING battles Killer Cult in a six man tag match. AAW Heavyweight Champion Rey Fenix defends against Matt Riddle in the main event. All this and much more!
AAW presents The Art Of War
From: Chicago, IL
Opening Contest: Zero Gravity (Brett Gakiya & CJ Esparza) vs. Curt Stallion & Jake Something: Stallion and Gakiya kick off the tag bout. Gakiya controls Stallion with a few armdrags and a springboard elbow strike. Esparza tags in and helps send both opponents to the floor. Zero Gravity hit stereo suicide dives to the floor. Esparza dropkicks Stallion on the mat and continues to deliver forearm strikes. Gakiya sneaks a tag that Stallion didn’t see. Gakiya hits a flipping neckbreaker for a near fall. Stallion nails Gakiya with a standing double stomp. Something gets tagged in and works over Gakiya with a backbreaker for a two count. Something forearms Gakiya in the corner but misses a splash hitting the corner chest first. Gakiya tries for a springboard back elbow but gets ran over by Something instead.
Stallion tags in and keeps control of Gakiya on the mat. Stallion hits a snap German suplex for a near fall. Gakiya tries for an armdrag but Stallion stops him with an abdominal stretch. Gakiya nearly wins with a rollup but Stallion comes back to drop Brett over his knee. Gakiya is driven down to the mat with a double vertical suplex. Gakiya hits a dropkick on Stallion and a crossbody on Something. Gakiya comes off the middle rope to hit Stallion with a spinning heel kick. Esparza gets the hot tag and he cleans house hitting a corkscrew elbow on Stallion. Something accidentally elbows his partner. Esparza avoids Something on the apron but is caught and Something attempts a powerbomb only for CJ to counter with a hurricanrana sending Jake flipping into the corner. Zero Gravity hit double dropkicks on Something and put Stallion in a tree of woe. Gakiya leaps off CJ’s back to dropkick Stallion. CJ has Stallion over his knee as Gakiya hits a leg drop for a near fall. CJ heads to the top rope but Something catches him in midair. Gakiya is caught in midair as well. Something tosses them both with a double fallaway slam! Something plants CJ with a swinging side slam, but Gakiya is able to breakup the cover. Gakiya springboard kicks Something on the apron. Stallion is laid out with a kick as Zero Gravity hit an assisted moonsault and a shooting star elbow but Something pulls CJ out of the ring. Something catches Gakiya on a suicide dive and sends Gakiya into Esparza. Stallion delivers a running head strike for the win. (**3/4. The finishing move used was kind of a bummer considering the spots leading up to it. However, I thought the match was nicely done and the team of Zero Gravity stood out to me. They had some good combination moves and were fun to watch. Jake Something appears to be a guy on the rise, as well. Look out for him.)
Prior to the next match, David Starr is in the ring and reminds Eddie Kingston that he has to listen to everything that he says. Starr gives Kingston a new t-shirt and it’s one that says “Eddie quit”.
Second Contest: Eddie Kingston vs. Kevin Lee Davidson: Davidson attacks before the bell with several strikes in the corner. Kingston comes back with strikes but Davidson delivers a spinning heel kick and a running senton splash for a two count. Kingston bails to the floor where Starr gets in his face. Davidson drives Kingston back first into the post. Davidson sends Kingston hard back first into the corner leading to another two count. Davidson tosses Kingston out of the corner. Davidson misses a clothesline but connects with a spear for a near fall. Davidson clotheslines Kingston for a near fall. Davidson hits a rolling fireman’s carry. Starr slaps Kingston from the floor. Kingston gets fired up and hits a side suplex. Kingston connects with a few spinning backfists and wins the match. (*1/2. Well, this was mostly an angle development segment, but Davidson was entertaining in his role. David Starr is doing a great job at being an annoying character. I’d have to think this leads to Kingston associating with Starr if he’s going to be winning matches.)
Backstage, Paco cuts a promo saying that tonight is the biggest night of his career. He isn’t going to let this opportunity go. He respects ACH, but this is his shot.
Third Contest: MJF vs. Juice Robinson: MJF has the early advantage with a boot and shoulder block. Robinson comes back with an arm drag and MJF bails to the floor. MJF comes back in and wants to shake hands with Robinson. They shake hands, but Juice blocks a sneak attack with a few chops. Robinson clotheslines MJF in the corner but MJF pulls the referee in front of him. MJF cheap shots Juice and tosses Robinson shoulder first into the post. MJF continues to work over the left arm of Robinson for a few moments. MJF drops Robinson over the top rope arm first before hitting a slingshot Flatliner for a near fall. MJF puts Robinson on the top turnbuckle but Juice is able to fight him off with overhand strikes. Juice leaps off the top to hit a crossbody. Robinson plants MJF with a spinebuster and a clothesline in the corner a couple of times. Juice hits a running cannonball into the corner. Juice continues with a full nelson slam for a near fall. MJF elbows Robinson in the corner before hitting a double stomp over the ropes. Robinson fights back with jabs before an eye rake stops him. Robinson decks MJF with a lariat and a powerbomb for a near fall. Robinson attempts the Un-Prettier but MJF breaks free and low blows Robinson. MJF gets a rollup and pins Robinson! (**1/2. Robinson had the explosive offense and looked great in the ring. MJF is a rising star, there’s no doubt about that. He’s capable of getting so much heat, it is great to watch. The match was solid effort and a huge win for MJF in AAW.)
Backstage, Matt Riddle cuts a promo talking about being a man who likes to collect championships and that’s the plan tonight.
Backstage, AAW Heritage Champion Rey Fenix is interviewed. Fenix considers Riddle to be a friend but tonight he’s an enemy.
Fourth Contest: Paco vs. ACH: Paco seems to be really over with the AAW crowd. I hadn’t watched AAW in a while prior to this. He must have really gotten himself over with the crowd, hopefully due to in-ring ability.
ACH wants to shake hands but fakes out Paco, twice. ACH taunts Paco and wants a hug, but Paco is faked out again. I’m not sure why Paco would fall for that three different times. ACH takes Paco down to the mat to start the match and then pie faces him a few times. ACH isn’t taking Paco seriously at all. Paco comes back with a takedown and stares down ACH after letting go. ACH shoulder blocks Paco and does a “you can’t see me” taunt. Paco head scissors ACH followed by a dropkick. Paco elbows ACH and hits a springboard crossbody for a near fall. ACH decides to bail to the floor, but Paco gets a running start looking for a dive. ACH knows this and casually walks away to prevent that from happening. ACH controls Paco with a test of strength and his chops are blocked. ACH gets a left hand strike in but Paco continues to block chops. ACH low blows Paco by making him look at something up.
ACH continues his offense with a backbreaker. ACH drops Paco with a chop and pulls him up by his ears before driving Paco down with a back suplex. ACH scoop slams Paco followed by the Ballin’ elbow for a near fall. ACH continues to work over Paco on the mat with kicks. Paco tries to fight back with strikes but ACH keeps him on the mat with strikes. ACH locks in an abdominal stretch but isn’t able to get a submission. ACH delivers more strikes to the lower back and stomps on Paco on the mat several times. ACH sends Paco into the corner and connects with a running clothesline. ACH misses a splash in the corner and Paco boots ACH in the other corner. Paco kicks ACH in the corner and heads to the top rope. Paco hits a missile dropkick. Paco appears to be getting some momentum as they both struggle to their feet. ACH avoids a tornado DDT, but Paco comes back with forearm strikes. Paco plants ACH with a tornado DDT for a near fall.
Paco goes to the middle rope and attempts a Canadian Destroyer, but ACH counters back dropping Paco to the mat. Paco delivers a shoulder from the apron and a kick to the face. Paco hits a Code Red back into the ring for a near fall. ACH leg sweeps Paco followed by a double stomp and dropkicks Paco. ACH kicks Paco to the floor and delivers a running kick to Paco’s chest. ACH casually rolls Paco back into the ring for a near fall. ACH comes off the top with a frog splash for a near fall, but pulled Paco up on the cover. Paco nearly steals the match with a rollup! Paco elbows ACH in the corner but ACH puts Paco on his shoulders managing to hit an electric chair slam for a two count. Paco staggers ACH with a kick to the head. Paco comes off the ropes with a clothesline. ACH stops Paco with another strike. ACH attempts a back suplex, but Paco lands on his feet and is met with a slap. Paco slaps ACH and they begin to trade several strikes in the middle of the ring. Paco superkicks ACH and comes off the ropes with a lariat! Paco has ACH on his shoulders hitting the Cradle Shock for a near fall! Paco comes off the ropes and takes ACH out with a suicide dive! Paco heads to the top rope and misses a splash! ACH comes off the ropes to deck Paco with a clothesline for a near fall!ACH goes for a suplex but Paco counters with a stunner. ACH with another clothesline and plants Paco with the brainbuster for the win! (***1/2. Okay, so that was a lot of fun. They told a great story of ACH not taking Paco seriously at all, but Paco showing the fight and spirit to make it a competitive match. I don’t think I was expecting ACH to play the douche heel role as well as he did here. Paco was a lot of fun and has the crowd behind him. This is the kind of match that elevated a local talent. I thought this was nicely down. Paco loses, but gains so much.) After the match, ACH shows respect for Paco by giving him a fist pump. An excellent conclusion to the story of the match, I’d say.
ACH cuts a promo with a young man in the ring. ACH notes that the young kid, named Jay, is getting picked on at school. ACH mentions he made fun of Paco, but Paco didn’t let it get to him and that he only listened to the fans. ACH does a great job of encouraging the child and gives Jay some merchandise. That was a great moment by ACH and the AAW promotion and fans. Excellent job, guys. Wrestling does great things, and this is one them.
Backstage, Kylie Rae is interviewed regarding her AAW Women’s Championship opportunity tonight. She didn’t know about the match right now. She is really excited and has to get ready for the match.
Prior to the next match, David Starr cuts a promo saying he knows that the Killer Cult like to brawl. Starr believes every time they speak that the fans want to hear what they say. Trevor Lee cuts a promo about being a millionaire TV star, which is hilarious. They aren’t about to wrestle under hardcore rules. The following six man tag match will be a standard rules match, apparently.
Fifth Contest: WRSTLING (David Starr, Jeff Cobb & Trevor Lee) vs. The Killer Cult (Sami Callihan, Dave Crist & Jake Crist): Killer Cult decide to kick all three men off the apron and they brawl on the floor. The bell hasn’t sounded yet and thus the match has no rules. Cobb gets the bell rung on his groin a few times by Dave. Jake and Lee are brawling while Sami is pummeling Starr and delivered a back suplex on the apron. Cobb used the ring bell on Dave’s groin, too. Jake drops Lee onto the apron with a back suplex. Sami chops Starr after putting him on the railing. Lee gouges Sami’s eyes. Lee gets rolled into the ring and the match officially starts. The referee prevents Sami from getting in the ring as Jake and Lee legally start the bout.
Starr knee lifts Jake from the apron but Jake decks Lee with a right hand. Cobb comes in and clotheslines Jake while the referee was distracted. Cobb continues to stomp away on Jake in the corner. Starr enters the match and hits a running crossbody into the corner for a one count. Starr keeps Jake on the mat with some amateur wrestling. Lee tags into the match and works over Jake in the corner. Lee works over Jake with several stomps and here comes Cobb to continue the offense with a hip toss out of the corner. Cobb taunts Sami and Dave before working over Jake in the corner and drives Jake to the mat for a near fall. Lee enters but Jake fights back with strikes out of the corner. Starr decks Jake with a forearm strike in the corner and a tilt a whirl flapjack for a two count. Jake continues to be worked over for several moments. Cobb continues to work over Jake with a strike and a bear hug. Jake fights out with a clap but is met with a forearm strike. Cobb plants Jake down to the mat with a Samoan Drop.
Cobb continues to beat on Jake with elbow strikes. Lee enters and is sent to the floor by Jake. Starr runs into a boot and Jake tries to tag out but his partners are pulled off the apron. Cobb attempts a suplex but Jake nearly wins with an inside cradle. Cobb tosses Jake with an overhead suplex for a near fall. Cobb brings Jake into the corner where Lee tags in and distracts the referee so that Starr can get a few moments of cheap offense on Jake. Lee puts Jake on the top turnbuckle and looks for a suplex but is shoved off. Jake comes off the top with a crossbody. Cobb tries to stop Jake and is met with a couple of kicks. Here comes Sami and he cleans house. Sami springboards to clothesline Starr off the apron. Sami takes both Lee and Starr out with a suicide dive to the floor. Sami plants Starr with a Death Valley Driver for a near fall.
Jake comes back in as well as Dave and they triple team Starr. Starr sends Dave into his partners and elbow strikes Dave. Starr dropkick Jake off the apron and Lee kicks Sami followed by Starr hitting a crossbody to the floor. Cobb has Jake and allows his partners to kick him before connecting with a suplex for a near fall. Jake is clotheslined five times before blocking Cobb and hitting a snap suplex on Lee in the corner. Starr is kicked by Sami in the corner. Jake has Starr and Dave comes off the top to hit a double stomp/tombstone for a near fall. Cobb takes off his strap and is met with three kicks at once. Lee comes off the ropes and is kicked by Dave and Sami. Starr is in the corner and pointed at by all three men. Starr wants to shake hands with the trio, but they aren’t interested. Starr decides to spit on Sami and is met with a double kick. Dave has Starr on his shoulders and Jake goes on Sami’s to hit a chicken fight ace crusher. Sami goes for the cover but there isn’t a referee.
Eddie Kingston makes his way out to the ring and decks JT Davidson on the floor. Kingston distracts the Killer Cult and they are all met with low blows from behind. Dave is held by Cobb and Lee. Starr is telling Kingston to hit Dave, and he does with a backfist. Starr covers Dave and wins the match. (***. A solid enough match and a good win for the top heel stable. It felt like this was an attempt to make Killer Cult into a babyface act, and it may have accomplished that judging by the crowd response. Though, it may be a short-lived turn. That should be interesting to see how that works out. Anyway, it was an enjoyable match.) After the match, Starr low blows Sami on the floor to avoid a ring bell shot. Cobb decks JT Davidson with the ring bell and the same happens to Sami.
Backstage, Curt Stallion and Jake Something cut a promo about them making things happen in AAW. Stallion doesn’t care about the fans, aside from them giving them money. Stallion reminds me of Heath Slater. Stallion is going to make AAW great again. Stallion hits on Something by saying he has really pretty eyes. They are putting AAW on notice.
Backstage, MJF is talking to himself in the corner of a hallway. MJF brings the female reporter into the scene and tells her how to interview him. MJF kicks her out of the scene after saying his name. MJF says he came here to show the fans what it looks like to be better than them. He is confident he will stream roll the competition.
Sixth Contest: AAW Women’s Champion Jessicka Havok vs. Kylie Rae vs. Scarlett Bordeaux in an elimination match: Havok takes on both women having them both on her shoulders to hit a Samoan Drop and nearly pins Bordeaux. Havok is sent to the floor after missing a running attack on Scarlett. Rae works over Havok on the floor with forearms and Bordeaux comes off the top with a crossbody to the floor. Scarlett works over Rae with strikes on the mat. Rae comes back with arm drags. Scarlett drives Rae into the second turnbuckle face first and delivers a running hip strike. Rae takes Scarlett down with a side Russian leg sweep and has the Crossface locked in. Havok comes over and breaks up the submission, despite the match being an elimination match. Scarlett delivers a jaw breaker and slaps Havok a few times. Havok plants Scarlett with a tombstone for the first elimination.
Rae comes in from behind and tries to get some momentum on the champion. Rae head scissors Havok to the mat followed by a couple of superkicks. Havok kicks Rae a few times to drop her to the mat. Havok delivers a running boot in the corner. Rae avoids a clothesline and puts the Crossface on the champ in the middle of the ring! Havok gets out of the hold and plants Rae with a tombstone for the win. (**1/2. I thought this was a perfectly solid match and they held my attention for the six minutes they were give. Havok as a major force seems to fit her well, but Kylie Rae could most likely be a big independent star in 2018 and moving forward. I think she is someone to keep an eye out on.)
Backstage, ACH cuts a promo that Paco showed him something tonight. It seems like ACH is a little lost but says that the match showed him way he came back to AAW. He sees a lot of himself in Paco from five years ago. ACH has always wanted to be AAW Heavyweight Champion. ACH says when he left ROH all he wanted to be was AAW Heavyweight Champion. Because, being champion would cement himself in AAW and on the independents. He credits Paco for showing him that he has the drive to go after that quest. He’ll be watching the main event closely.
Seventh Contest: Myron Reed vs. Teddy Hart: Hart takes Reed down to the mat quickly in the beginning moments but Reed is able to reach the ropes to break the hold. Hart gets a rollup for a two count. Hart takes Myron down again with a cross arm breaker but is able to reach the ropes again. Hart works over Reed with strikes and drops him arm first down to the mat. Teddy continues to drive Reed down to the mat by his arm and hits a standing moonsault after standing on Reed’s back. Reed decides to bail to the floor to regroup and get some feeling back in his arm. Hart works over Reed on the floor with right hands and a snap suplex on the floor. Hart tosses Reed over the railing into the crowd and Hart hit a springboard moonsault into the crowd!
Hart sets up a few chairs in the crowd as Reed struggles to his feet. Hart drives Reed onto the chairs and is laid onto the chairs. Hart is on chairs but Reed counters with a backdrop onto the chairs. Reed drives Teddy face first onto the apron. Reed dives over the post and takes Hart out with a dive! Reed puts Hart in the crowd and comes off the ropes to take Hart out with another twisting dive! Reed shoulder rams Hart on the apron but is met with an uppercut and jaw breaker. Hart plants Reed with a rope assisted piledriver. Hart hits a wheelbarrow turned full nelson suplex. Hart locks in a bear hug to keep control of the match. Hart lays Reed over the middle rope before catapulting Myron on the top rope throat first. Hart spikes Reed with a DDT. Hart attempts a springboard moonsault but Reed manages to get his knees up. Reed puts Hart on the top turnbuckle but is knocked off. Reed kicks Hart on the middle rope and hits a sunset flip powerbomb for a near fall. Reed hits a springboard reverse hurricanrana but Hart kicks out at two!
Reed heads to the top rope but Hart cuts him off again. Hart has Reed on the middle rope and delivers a backbreaker over the top turnbuckle. Reed crashes to the mat and Hart hits a Canadian Destroyer. Hart has Reed delivering a pump handle backbreaker. Teddy puts Reed on the top turnbuckle and hits a Canadian Destroyer for the win. (***1/4. They just did insane spots throughout the match, which had to be expected. Teddy Hart is crushing it in 2018, which considering his style has to be a surprise that his body isn’t wrecked. A fun match, though the spots could possibly burnout the crowd with two title matches left.)
Backstage, AAW Women’s Champion Jessika Havoc is interviewed regarding her title win and where she plans on going in the future. She says the championship means everything to her and she appreciated the “you deserve it” chant she got the night she won the title. Her plan is to continue to show the fans why she is still a force to be reckoned with.
AAW Heritage Champion Zema Ion makes his way out and is here to discuss an apparent injury he has suffered. Ion thanks the fans for their energy and for being one of the best crowds in the entire world. He mentions that in his first title defense he ruptured four discs in his back. He had to cancel a tour with Pro Wrestling NOAH. He also had to think about if he was going to vacate the championship. Ion proclaims that nobody will be stripping him of the title and that someone will have to beat him for it. Ion will be returning next month in AAW. That announcement brings out AR Fox. Fox has his right arm all wrapped up it looks like. Fox was supposed to compete tonight, but he’s also injured. Fox notes that he’s been on a roll in AAW. Fox thinks he’s in line for a title shot. However, they get cutoff by Trevor Lee. Lee has a lot to say and a lot to listen to. Lee was in the crowd before making his way out to the ring through the curtain. He claims that the fans love him. The fans actually saw him wrestle unlike the other two guys. Lee puts over Ion and says he’s been killing it as champion. Lee rips on AR Fox saying how many times can he hit the guard railing after a flip and not break something. Lee wants the DJ to hit the trademark horn, which he does on a second attempt. Lee suggests that Ion just drop the title to him. Ion says that Lee is going to have to kill him. Lee attacks Ion from behind and AR Fox helps out hitting Lee. Jeff Cobb gets in the ring and puts a choke on Fox while Lee continues to stomp on Ion. Lee hits Fox with the championship, too. Ion and Fox are left laying to end the segment as Lee decks Ion with the championship.
Backstage, Teddy Hart is interviewed regarding his victory earlier against Myron Reed. Hart puts over Reed saying that he’s the future of the wrestling business. Hart talks about missing bookings for nearly four months and thought about retiring while in jail. Teddy realized he had more to give in professional wrestling. Hart says its his job to study the guys on the show. Teddy puts over the fans for knowing the business. Teddy hopes to bring Jack Evans back to AAW, but he also wants a shot against Pentagon in a singles match. He helped train Pentagon and respects him. He thinks that AAW deserves to have the match happen in their promotion. Teddy feels like it was worth it having not gone to WWE due to the fans and their support.
Eighth Contest: AAW Tag Team Champions The Besties In The Worlds (Davey Vega & Mat Fitchett) vs. Keith Lee & Shane Strickland: Lee and Vega kick off the title match with Vega rolling to the floor to stall for a bit as soon as the bell sounds. Vega gets back in the ring and tries to take Lee down by his leg, but Lee easily avoids that by just throwing Vega down to the mat. Strickland tags in and takes Vega over with a head scissors and a dropkick to send Vega into a corner. Vega dropkicks Strickland before bailing to the floor to avoid Strickland. Fitchett is tagged in and takes Strickland over with a hurricanrana, but Strickland lands on his feet to deliver a knee strike. Strickland punches Fitchett in the corner and tags in Lee. Lee continues to beat on Fitchett and Mat drops to the canvas. Fitchett tries to tag in Vega, but is dragged back to the corner and is worked over some more. Strickland tags into the match and Fitchett is sent into the corner by Lee. Strickland delivers a running uppercut a few times in the corner. Vega tries to forearm Lee, which doesn’t work out very well for himself. Vega is sent into Fitchett in the corner. Strickland is backdropped to the apron, as is Lee. The challengers hit double crossbody blocks back into the ring.
Lee goes for a dive but the champs avoid it on the floor by running away. Strickland chops Fitchett in the crowd a few times. Vega nails Strickland with a running boot off the apron and Fitchett recovers on the floor to keep control on Strickland. Vega tags into the match legally and beats on Strickland with right hands. Strickland is worked over in the champions corner for a few moments. Fitchett is arguing with Vega but they keep control of Strickland with a scoop slam and knee drop. Fitchett continues with another suplex for a near fall on Shane. Strickland can’t get any momentum on Fitchett. Strickland knee lifts Fitchett but Vega prevents the tag from being made. Strickland plants Vega with a rolling cutter.
Lee gets the tag and he cleans house on the champions with clotheslines. Lee tosses Fitchett out of the corner and does the same to Vega. Lee chops Vega in the corner and the crowd is digging it. Lee stops Fitchett with a backbreaker and a forearm strike. Fitchett kicks Lee and is met with a suplex over the top to the floor. Lee has Fitchett in the ring by himself and along with Strickland delivers a forearm/kick combo. The challengers deliver a running clothesline/kick combo as well for a two count on Fitchett. Fitchett takes Lee over with a nice reverse hurricanrana and kicks Strickland in the corner. Fitchett plants Lee with a tornado DDT and Vega appears to be favoring his leg. Strickland fights back with strikes and kicks Strickland. The champs hit a running kick/brainbuster with Vega using his bad knee, apparently. Lee is put on the top turnbuckle by the champs. Lee counters a hurricanrana by holding Fitchett. Vega has a chair and whacks Lee with it to allow Fitchett to hit the hurricanrana. Strickland smashes Vega with the steel chair. Strickland delivers a 619 but Fitchett nails Strickland with a kick and running knee strike for a near fall. Lee catches Fitchett and Strickland delivers a kick. Lee has Fitchett setup for and they hit a Spirit Bomb/double stomp combo for a near fall as Vega pulled the referee out to the floor. Lee tosses Vega into the guard railing with a POUNCE!
Fitchett takes Lee out with a suicide dive to the floor over the guard railing. Fitchett gets caught in midair by Strickland, who puts a cross arm breaker on right in the middle of the ring. Fitchett gets to his feet and nearly wins with an inside cradle. Fitchett plants Strickland with a tilt a whirl tombstone for the win. (***. It was a solid tag team match, but it felt like it was a match that didn’t need to go twenty minutes. They did some cool stuff and I’d say it’s a really good win for the tag champs this month. If they shed three to five minutes off of this, it’s probably a bit better, for me.)
Backstage, Myron Reed cuts a promo about his match with Teddy Hart. He thinks that 2018 is going to be his year to shine.
Main Event: AAW Heavyweight Champion Rey Fenix vs. Matt Riddle: They shake hands to show mutual respect. Riddle takes Fenix down to the mat and controls the left leg for a brief moment. Fenix takes Riddle down to the mat with a drop toe hold. Riddle controls Fenix on the mat with a wrist lock but they are countering each other very well. Riddle gets an ankle lock on Fenix for a brief moment. Fenix takes Riddle down to the mat and the challenger reaches the ropes quickly. Fenix elbows Riddle to break free from his grip. Fenix avoids a kick but misses a superkick as Riddle side stepped it. Riddle counters a handspring with a suplex and rolls through with another release gut wrench suplex for a near fall. Fenix and Riddle begin to trade strikes with Riddle keeping Fenix on the mat. Riddle delivers several knee strikes to the ribs of the champ on the mat for a near fall. Riddle takes Fenix over with a release German suplex and a standing senton splash for a near fall. Riddle kicks Fenix several times in the corner. Riddle forearms Fenix several times to keep control of the match. Fenix superkicks a leaping Riddle in the corner followed by a springboard kick in the corner.
Fenix takes Riddle out with a cannonball splash in the corner. Fenix hits a springboard senton for another near fall. Fenix elbows Riddle in the corner but Riddle hits an overhead suplex into the corner. Riddle continues with a knee strike for a near fall. Riddle drives Fenix down with a modified fisherman buster, twice, for a near fall. Riddle kicks Fenix a few times on the chest. Fenix blocks a kick but Riddle delivers a Superman punch. Fenix bicycle kicks Riddle into a corner and hits a Muscle Buster turned into a Cradle Shock for a near fall. Riddle gets up and Fenix hits a modified Steiner Screwdriver for a near fall. Fenix gets caught on a moonsault attempt and Riddle hits a tombstone piledriver for a near fall. Riddle powerbombs Fenix followed by a knee strike for a near fall. Riddle has Fenix and sets up for the Bro To Sleep, but Fenix counters with an inside cradle for the win. (**1/2. I don’t know, I think I’ve been just burnout from all the great action that the main event didn’t deliver as much as earlier matches. It felt like they were rushing through the action and there weren’t layers to their story. I’d say this was a disappointing main event.) After the match, ACH enters the ring and has a confrontation with Fenix. ACH holds the middle rope open for Fenix. ACH doesn’t do anything evil. They’ll be meeting soon.
Backstage, AAW Heritage Champion Zema Ion is interviewed regarding what happened with Trevor Lee. Ion doesn’t know what Lee’s problem is with him. Ion says that Lee tried to ruin his career four weeks before his return. Ion believes he’ll be okay for the February show. They’ll be meeting at the next show, apparently. Ion promises to always go hard every match.
Backstage, Trevor Lee, David Starr and Jeff Cobb cut a promo. David Starr believes Lee will win the title and Cobb will beat up AR Fox. Eddie Kingston as off camera and they ask him how it went. Kingston doesn’t really care. Starr is happy that they have been killing it. Starr reminds Kingston that if he doesn’t listen to them then he’s back on the streets with nothing.
Backstage, AR Fox is interviewed regarding Jeff Cobb attacking him. He’ll be wrestle Cobb on February 3rd. Fox says he’ll be 100% by the show and wants Cobb to get ready to be beaten by him.
AAW is one of the best independent promotions going today. They have some great in-ring, but they also have a strong focus on angles and development. That’s something I can really get behind. It took me a bit to get through this just because it was a near four hour release, but it was an overall really good show. I look forward to more AAW in 2018.
Thanks for reading.