Prefacing this by saying I love AEW, it’s right down my alley and what I love about professional wrestling. However, this is by far and away the least interested I’ve been heading into an AEW PPV out of their own doing, whether it be poorly mapping out a story, or straight out matches I’ve no interest in - obviously disregarding some of the pandemic events where Khan’s hands were essentially tied behind his back. Having said that, in typical AEW fashion, I’m sure the event itself will be outstanding, certain matches will go over and above expectations - and, of course, I’ll be buying and watching as ever. So, let’s get to the matches!
Ethan Page and The Gunns vs. The Hardys and Hook;
Obvious result is obvious. The built may very well be completely uninteresting, but considering the competitors involved - the heat-magnets that are Page and the Gunns, and how over the Hardys and Hook always are - the crowd will no doubt be glued to the action. Straight forward tag match, with the faces going over. Would do the Gunns well to maybe continue their feud with the Hardys, and possible get a couple of Dynamite matches against the legendary tag-team. However, high time for Hook to push on, and possible get a decent singles PPV match at All In or All Out.
Jade Cargill vs. Taya Valkyrie - AEW TBS Championship
Cargill retains, but we’re coming dangerously close to a point where the fans are just not interested in Cargill and her reign. A successful defence on PPV should have her issue an open challenge soon and (finally) get her to drop it. The first Collision show anyone?
Blackjack Battle Royal - AEW International Championship
Been humming and hawing over this one, but I really feel Cassidy should retain. The entire story about this championship is 100% about Cassidy, how these successful title defences are gradually wearing his body down. Final four should be Cassidy, Starks, Jay White and I’m going with Big Bill. Starks and White take each other out, continue that heartless feud, and Cassidy upstages the giant similar to Benoit/Big Show. Similar to Cargill, Cassidy should drop it over the coming weeks - maybe even to a Big Bill in dominant fashion.
Adam Cole vs. Chris Jericho - Unsanctioned Match
If the result of this match wasn’t obvious enough, they introduce the hometown hero, Sabu, to the fold. While I don’t see Sabu making much of an impact, I do see him as some sort of red-herring. My prediction is Kyle O’Reilly makes his big return mid-match, helps Cole win before his eventual programme with MJF for the World Title over the summer.
Wardlow vs. Christian Cage - Ladder Match for the AEW TNT Championship
This... is an unpredictable match. I can see a case for either to win. Christian winning has been teased at for some time, longer than the Wardlow build itself in fact. Christian proclaimed to win a championship before Jungle Boy. However, that would set-up a yet another Christian vs. Jungle Boy feud and encounter that I don’t think anyone wants to see at this point. So, for that reason, along with the hot-potato usage of the title in recent times, Wardlow retains, defeating a legend at his own game. No idea where Wardlow goes from there, however I’m sure a Wardlow vs. Luchasaurus title match on Dynamite should be a fun watch.
Jamie Hayter vs. Toni Storm - AEW Women’s Championship
If rumours are to be believed, and Hayter is a lot more hurt than previously thought, we may not get this match in the first place. The rumours seem too strong to dismiss, and ex-Stardom alumni Storm can carry the title in the short-term as we head into Forbidden Door. Storm wins, Hayter regains the title at Wembley.
FTR vs. Jeff Jarrett and Jay Lethal - AEW World Tag Team Championships, Mark Briscoe Referee
Fun match, I’m sure. Like the six-man, over faces, and great heels. What more can you ask for? FTR wins, Briscoe finally turns on Dutt’s men.
Blackpool Combat Club vs. The Elite - Anarchy in the Arena
World class talent at every turn… but the Blackpool Combat Club have carried this build. It hasn’t helped that the only real moment Elite have shone, Omega is turned on by Callis - presumably for a story not even affiliated with this. The build is set up for an Elite win. They will win. Page is finally embraced into the group by Omega. Omega vs. Callis’ new man, Will Ospreay, at Forbidden Door - and Sanada vs. Adam Page for the IWGP World Title??
MJF vs. Darby Allin vs. Jungle Boy vs. Sammy Guevara
Appalling build, confusing build - most of these guys’ promo time has been spent talking about the company is run to the ground, followed by yet another whine. I’m glad to see the back of this. MJF wins.