Rey Fenix def. Nick Jackson
The story is that Matt Jackson was injured at the hands of Santana and Ortiz on last week's show, forcing Nick to fend for himself here against Fenix. I honestly can't remember the last time I've seen Nick go at it alone (if ever), but he had a hell of a showing in this match. Of course, that shouldn't come as any surprise considering who his opponent was. This was a highly entertaining affair that was perfectly positioned as the opener. The crowd being as loud for this as they were only added to my enjoyment of it. I will argue all day long that Fenix is one of the most exciting wrestlers to watch in the world today.
Hikaru Shida def. Britt Baker
Shida is one of the few women in AEW who has consistently impressed me, but this wasn't one of her finer outings. For whatever reason, she and Baker didn't click all that well and the crowd was still recovering from Fenix vs. Jackson. It didn't help the match lacked meaning. I'm glad Shida won as she continues to climb the ranks in the AEW women's division, but as I've said many times in the past month, AEW should be doing a better job of showcasing their women and providing viewers with a reason to care about them as characters.
"Hangman" Adam Page and MJF Were the Two Remaining Participants in the Dynamite Dozen Battle Royal
Most Battle Royals tend to be very hit or miss, and while the crowd was into this, I can't say I was personally. The twerking nonsense with Billy Gunn (?!) and Sonny Kiss was stupid, as was Jimmy Havoc using a staple gun on everyone. It became fairly obvious once MJF went out to ringside that he and Page would be the two remaining combatants, which was the only logical outcome. The rest of this was whatever. Page vs. MJF should be great, but I'm curious what the purpose of this ring is that they'll be fighting for.
Jurassic Express Saved AEW World Tag Team Champions SCU From The Inner Circle
Chris Jericho "apologized" for throwing a tantrum at the end of last week's Dynamite, but the funny thing is that Jake Hager actually said sorry for him, which got a chuckle out of me. Jericho is a genius. Anyway, his big announcement was that he'll be holding a "thank you" Thanksgiving celebration next Wednesday night. It was intended to be anticlimactic, because Jericho vs. Scorpio Sky for the AEW World Championship was then made official for next week's show. Shout-out to RJ Marceau for bringing it to my attention that SCU didn't have their tag titles with them, which was weird. The entire Inner Circle laid a beatdown on SCU, who were rescued by Jurassic Express (specifically Luchasaurus).
Luchasaurus def. Peter Avalon
Luchasaurus returned to a huge reaction last week despite it being originally rumored that he'd be out of action until January. What's amazing is that I don't think he's won a single match in AEW until now. Avalon is essentially the go-to jobber for the company, so Luchasaurus squashing him in the matter of a minute was exactly what needed to happen. I'm a big Jurassic Express fan, but Luchasaurus has breakout star written all over him.
Private Party def. Santana and Ortiz
This match was dedicated to the memory of Matt Travis, who was a close friend of these teams from House of Glory Wrestling. Travis unfortunately passed away suddenly the weekend of Full Gear at the young age of 25. It was super cool of AEW to acknowledge that and allow them to honor him with an awesome matchup. I appreciated that they focused more on the storytelling and not so much on it being a spotfest, but that botch with the referee toward the end was pretty bad. Nick Jackson aided Private Party to victory before being attacked at ringside by Sammy Guevara. Dustin Rhodes also made his return and attacked Santana, Ortiz and Guevara.
Jon Moxley def. Darby Allin
The first match of Allin's that I saw was against Jon Moxley at a Northeast Wrestling show back in June. It was an absolute blast, and while this wasn't No Disqualification like that one was, this was still an exceptional main event and another opportunity for Allin to mix it up with a main event player. The crowd was very much behind both men and gave this a big fight feel. Allin scored plenty of offense and was made to look like strong in defeat. Plus, he sold that Paradigm Shift off the top rope like a champ.
The show kicked off on a high note with that insane Nick Jackson vs. Fenix match, but it took a step backward with the women's match and the throwaway Battle Royal. Things picked up again with the Jericho-Sky segment that successfully set up a big AEW Women's Championship matchup for next week (in addition to Page vs. MJF), the Luchasaurus squash was fine, Private Party vs. Santana and Ortiz was excellent, and the main event was a real treat. The positives outweighed the negatives, not to mention that the crowd was wild all night long.
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