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Collision TV report for 04/13/2024

Venue: Truist Arena, Highland Heights, KY

*****

Matt Menard with Schiavone, standing in for Nigel.  They started filming them standing right in front of the crowd and showed highlights of Mox becoming NJPW champ.  And he’ll be back on Dynamite Weds.

*****

Danielson and Claudio talked about a big week for the BCC – Mox winning the belt ahead of Danielson/Ospreay and their match tonight.  The story is supposedly that Callis is sending people after Danielson to soften him up.  Danielson said that doesn’t suggest Callis has much faith in Ospreay.

The BCC guys said it’s easier to beat them than hurt them.  A broken orbital bone and arm didn’t stop Danielson; Claudio’s been going nonstop for fifteen years, like Swiss clockwork.

Seems they’re somewhat going back to the old format of starting by promo-ing the main event.

That story’s stupid btw.  We at least need to hear something from Ospreay saying he’s got nothing to do with wanting to soften up BD.  But then that’d require them to flesh out the Fam/Ospreay story.  Which they’ve seemed loathe to do.

House of Black vs Dante Martin, Action Andretti & Matt Sydal

Backstory: NONE

Bobby Cruise on announcing again.  I’ll leave it after this week, but he does drag the show down by his ROH affiliation.  Don’t get firing Dasha.

Andretti & Buddy setting it off – hey, did you know Andretti beat Jericho?  The announcers do.

They wrestled around controlling the arm/shoulder, each forcing the other to the mat until a Matthews headlock.  Andretti countering out and up, holding the ropes to block a whip, leapfrog over, dropkick, tag to Sydal.

Who got a quick two with a cradle.

Malakai in to a nice pop but immediately smacked with a Sydal heel kick, Dante in off the top, just about landing a swanton.  For two.  They are hammering that ‘Where the best wrestle’ tagline.

Black and Andretti now, blind tag from Brody who smashed through the faces, even shaking off a double dropkick.  Andretti ducked a lariat, hopped on the shoulders but was held into a boot to the face into a German, assisted by Malakai.

The House are not remotely heels to these fans.

Buddy with a running pump kick in the corner for two.  Andretti slipped out of a suplex and went for a tag, blocked, enziguri, tag at the second attempt.  Sydal headscissors, leg lariat, Black in, rising knee for him, he then booted Sydal back into the ropes, all the House are in now via zero tags, Sydal powerbombed by Buddy across Malakai’s knees.

Ads.  Nice action, no story or even heel/face dynamic.

Buddy and Sydal, the former targeting the back, Andretti getting the crowd into it, Sydal hit a poisonrana and landed right on his own head, I gasped, seems he’s okay.  Double tags, Black and Dante, gamengiri from the apron, diving cross body, Malakai rolled through – not the smoothest sequence – Dante countered a pop-up into a tejeiras, to the top, avoiding Brody, landing on his feet out of a German, enziguri to Malakai for two.

Really nice flurry.  Capped via plancha onto Brody outside.

Andretti in, Malakai countered a DVD to land on his feet, Action took out Buddy via tope but ate a Malakai moonsault, boot to the chest, one to the face, Brody in, Dante’s Inferno coming, the other faces raced in to make the save, triple superkicks, series of them.

Meteora from Sydal to take out Buddy, Andretti taking out Malakai, taken out by Brody, Dante saved the pin via frogsplash.  Everybody down.  TiA from the crowd, unlike other recent chants, this is at least very good.

Brody powered out of an Andretti 450 at barely two, Sydal had a meteora blocked, was powered to the corner, cue barking, cannonball along with kicks from the other HOB, win.

Very fun opener.  Malakai and Brody both had words into the camera for Copeland.

Winner: House of Black

They replayed that dumb Rosa/Storm angle and whole cluster with Mariah and Mina Shirakawa.  The ‘kiss heard around the world’ per Schiavone.  Lexy said ‘We saw… a lot,’ as she introduced Toni and May backstage.  Couldn’t have put it better.

Toni started looking like she was going to kiss May when Lexy asked about Wednesday.  Storm said a lot of whacky, weird, sexual, vaguely entertaining stuff designed to raise a smile but which didn’t do a thing to sell any tickets or matches.  Some of it aimed at AZM.  Whoever on earth that is.

If she mentioned Rosa, I missed it.

*****

Footage of Jericho Wednesday talking to Taz, since Hook won’t return Jericho’s calls.  Taz said Hook’s his own man and pissed at Jericho, but he’d try.  Apparently he was successful since they announced a ‘meeting’ between the two, brokered by Taz.

Schiavone then bragged that they did know where Hook is since he’s wrestling on BotB.  So Jericho’s either dumb or reserves his Saturdays for the Goose.

Lee Moriarty vs Katsuyori Shibata

Backstory: When they’re not squabbling among themselves, Shibata, Hook and Jericho are feuding with STP

Ogogo joined on comms.

This got right to grappling, right to the mat, Moriarty getting a break in the ropes.  Moriarty snapmared him over, shot to the spine, weird roll through into a sleeper.  Ogogo said that ‘0000000.01’ percent of people make it to the Olympics.  Or know who he is.  One of the two at least.

They kept grappling, focusing on the legs now, in and out of leglocks, until Moriarty bailed through the ropes to break the hold.  Shibata wailing on him at ringside as Ogogo aimed a gut shot, Taylor presumably had the ref, they neglected to show it.

Shibata stayed down selling for way longer than ten seconds but the count was mercifully slow.  Wouldn’t you know, made it back in.  Just in time.

Ads.  Nothing like a heel faction so piss-weak that they make everyone look dumb with groan inducing interference just to get the audience to believe there’s a shred of a chance they might win.

Back to Shibata ignoring Moriarty chops, walking through now, pushing Lee all the way back to the opposite corner.  Then wailing on him down to the mat, hanging dropkick in the corner, underhook suplex out for two.

He blocked an abdominal, transitioning behind into one of his own, Moriarty got the ropes but took a saito suplex down but hit a knee to the gut, exchange of running boots, fighting spirit and all that.

Shibata blocked the ‘Fang’ (still no idea what that is) into a ripcord open hand and big kick for the win.

Taylor jumped Shibata, Hook came out and flung Moriarty with a judo throw.  Crowd chanting for Hook, Ogogo dropped the headset but was talked out of entering the ring by Taylor.

If they’re building Ogogo to feed him to Hook, that’s not a bad use of him.  But Ogogo has not been seen since 2021.  You may want to remind your audience who he is if you’re going to feature him to this degree.

Winner: Katsuyori Shibata

They replayed Athena vs Shida from the ROH ppv.  And Billie Starkz faking an injury to win.  Why is ROH sometimes mentioned but sometimes not?

Lexy with Athena and Billie.  Lexy was all chummy and friendly with them like she knew them.  No idea what’s going on there.  Athena was excellent as she usually is during promos.  It remains baffling that she’s stuck in ROH when AEW don’t even have a single handful of women who can work and promo.

Basically, they wanted the 400,000 people who watch Collision to know what’s going on behind the ROH paywall of like 10,000 people.

*****

Lexy with the Disputed Kingdom.  Strong repeated his latest spiel about doing it by himself, just like his friend Kyle.

Btw, yet another dude who’s disappeared off the face of the earth but they’ll probably want us to care about sometime soon.

Daniel Garcia vs Angelico

Backstory: NONE

Garcia hooked a quick cradle for two, legsweep, Angelico begged off and grabbed the ropes.  Angelico got a cradle himself.  For two.  Then stomped the knee.  Crowd pretty dead here, they’ve been good most of the night.

Angelico got a belly to back, Garcia kicked him away and swept him into the figure four.  They keep rolling back and forth, changing the pressure, as if either might possibly tap.  Garcia stomped away at the knee, selling his own to the degree he tried to hit the ropes but could not, though landed a swinging neckbreaker and punched his own knee.

Pair of rights, duck under, underhook suplex, running forearm in the corner, ten punches, stupid dance, overhand slap, saito suplex, leglock in the middle, Angelico frantically tapped.  Weird not to win with his finish.  Kinda the point of a squash.

Very flat, crowd couldn’t have cared less.  Though did like Garcia.  Lesson seems to be fast and constant action can overcome lack of story.  But otherwise matches get very boring without stakes.

Winner: Daniel Garcia

Footage of Okada beating down Pac and etc on Weds.

Pac promo from the back.  He thanked Okada for walloping him in the head.  ‘That was very brave of you wasn’t it?’  Pac now has a perpetual headache to remind him what happened.

He’s not a Japanese superstar or tall and handsome or owns a Ferrari, ‘but what I am is better than you!’  And next week at Dynasty he’s going to relish the chance to prove it.  ‘Understand me…? Good.’

So Pac selling the headshot is better than not.  But what would have been better is not doing it at all.  And not having to basically talk about having a concussion.  Match’ll be killer; they seem to have gone from having plenty of time to build this, to almost none, without achieving much.

Toni Storm vs AZM

Backstory: NONE

Toni came out with Mariah and was implying lesbianism again.  Anna Jay came out to bring out AZM.  Tony gave a brief rundown, Stardom Highspeed champ and etc.  Better than nothing.  But what is a Highspeed champ?  What does that mean?  Where does that rank in Stardom?  What is its AEW equivalent?

AZM kept aiming flurries, Toni came laughing in way OTT fashion – ‘HA, HA, HA, HA, HA!’

AZM tripped her down, kick to the chest, dropkick, kip-up – impressive, crowd liked that.  AZM then pressed Toni’s face to the mat with her boot, Storm kicked out at one from a pin.  Then clocked the youngster down from the buckle.  And nailed her off the apron with a hip attack.

MayJay began to brawl around ringside.  And disappeared.

AZM hit a running knee from the apron, Toni was again OTT, again deliberately, this time in her selling, wide-eyed like something out of an old silent movie.

Ads.  Along with Wednesday’s desperate stunt, there’s now a lot of implied sexuality among the women and perhaps the two best-looking ones on the roster are feuding.

Toni kept slugging her down, AZM kept firing back: roundhouse, headscissors takedown, another roundhouse with Toni on her knees, shotgun dropkick from the top – with Toni lying flat, looked good – for two.

Toni hit a sky high for a near fall.  AZM countered a waistlock via armdrag takedown, Storm blocked another roundhouse, release German, AZM ending up in the corner, hip attack, Storm Zero, win.

Good while it lasted.  Perhaps some of the other pointless men’s matches could’ve had some time cut.  AZM looks very talented.  Much better than most of the women on AEW’s roster.

May reappeared with champagne and they implied more sexual stuff.  She clutched Mariah to her bosom then licked her face.  Repeatedly.  That’s like fifteen minutes tv time to achieve absolutely nothing outside of introducing a talent who doesn’t work for the company.

Winner: Toni Storm

Lexy with Red Velvet, who’s facing Athena at BotB.  She referred to Athena as Lexy’s ‘boss’ (???), then said she’s been in big matches before and is going to lay Athena out.

Didn’t last long, very strong promo, full of conviction and to the point.  I believed she was going to try and do what she said.

So that’s two strong women’s promos from women who never appear on tv.

*****

Mark Briscoe backstage.  The HOB try to intimidate, strike fear; Mark fears no man.  He, Eddie and Copeland are some violent men, he warned HOB to ‘be afraid, be very afraid…’ then barked like a madman.

Solid stuff as usual from Mark.

*****

Tony brought Rosa to the stage.  He said she never lost the title and has a chance to redeem herself.  Rosa said she wanted to thank the fans for watching and without us AEW wouldn’t have made all the memories they have in the past five years.

But she’s here to remind people she doesn’t need help to win.  Especially from Deonna.  She earned her degree, her citizenship and won the title by herself.  She fought hard to be in AEW.

‘Where the best wrestle.’

She said Toni used to have the same perspective back when they teamed.

Before Rosa’s body couldn’t carry her as far as her passion did.  So she had to heal.  But now she has another opportunity.  She’s going to humble Storm.  She didn’t leave because she couldn’t carry the weight of the title and she’ll also carry the pride of the fans and her family.  If she has to break every single bone in her own body to empower every woman in the locker room who fight every day for an opportunity, ‘where the best wrestle.’

Toni should kiss her clone goodbye, she made a big mistake trying to erase her makeup, you can’t kill what’s already dead (she started removing her own makeup), she’s coming for the title and to drag Toni’s soul to hell.

All over the place.  Very passionate.  Good in places.  Trailed away from her point several times to go into shoot-ish comments about the women in the back fighting for opportunities and such.

Could’ve really benefitted from sitting down with a good promo person and fine-tuning it.

*****

Backstage, Deonna promo.  If Rosa doesn’t want her help, that’s fine, she’ll help herself.  She said her feud with Toni ‘wasn’t personal.’  (It wasn’t!? Then what the hell was all that stuff about tattoos and how they used to be best friends?)

She just thought Toni doesn’t embody a champion.  Someone like her does, a ‘workhorse’.  She could stand here and make excuses as to why she’s not the champ or she could do something about it.  If she can’t get one Toni Storm, she might aswell get the other, so she’s going to break Mariah’s arm.

I tend to like Deonna’s promos.  They have swagger and they’re serious.  Problem is they’re also very heelish.  And this was no exception.  None of which is helped by Storm and her whole act.

*****

Schiavone said he had ‘blockbuster news.’  Bucks vs FTR is now a ladder match.

Why?  Who the hell knows.  Tony Khan probably watched some old ECW of guys killing their bodies and decided he’d have his wrestlers do the same to overcome the wretched inadequacy of the way he’s booked this tournament and feud.

You add a stip when a feud necessitates it.  Not because it ‘needs something.’

Bryan Danielson & Claudio Castagnoli vs Will Hobbs & Kyle Fletcher

Backstory: See above

This flew right into a brawl around ringside.  Menard broke out yet another ‘Where the best wrestle.’

The ref totally ignored the count, Hobbs and Claudio finally returned to the ring, scoop slam from the latter, he draped Hobbs across the ropes and Danielson nailed a shotgun from the top.

Ads.

Fletcher had Claudio in a choke on the mat, the Swiss powered up into a gut-wrench suplex.  Then kicked free to bag the tag, Danielson to another shotgun from the top, Hobbs knocked off the apron, series of uppercuts to Fletcher, kip off the buckle, running lariat/back elbow, fans fully behind him, Schiavone really putting him over.

Yes! kicks coming, Fletcher on his knees, ducking the round house but Danielson rebounded off the ropes to nail him.  But was caught – sort of, Hobbs mostly dropped him – out of a vaulting body press though recovered to hit a leaping knee off the apron.

Fletcher took him out; Claudio then took him out with a running uppercut.  Then whipped Hobbs to the buckle.  The AEW refs have yet again forgotten how to count as they now brawled into the crowd.

Ads.

Fletcher now pulling up the ringside mats.  Considering the whole point of the match was to hurt Danielson, this is the first time they’ve tried, over ten minutes in.  He’s barely even been in the ring.  Danielson backdropped free.

Back inside, Fletcher set BD atop the buckle but was crotched up there.  Danielson looked for a belly to back but was hoisted atop Hobbs’ shoulders.  Until Claudio returned with uppercuts.  All four just in the ring here, ref couldn’t care less.

After the other two brawled outside, Danielson got the avalanche belly to back for a near fall.  Hobbs broke the LeBell to save Fletcher.  Then went to the apron for a tag.  Dude this ref doesn’t care just come in.

Danielson sent the heels banging into each other, Claudio awaiting a tag.  Wild flurry of uppercuts in the corner to Hobbs, ref tried to stop him, Claudio just ignored him.  Then did the same t Fletcher, running uppercuts to both heels across opposite corners.

Fletcher sent out, Hobbs tripped down, into the swing, into the sharpshooter, Fletcher came to break it, at his leisure.  He intercepted Danielson via superkick but took a pop-up uppercut, allowing Hobbs to hit the spinebuster.  Claudio kicked out.

Crowd chanting for BCC as Menard tried to cover for the ref just letting all four be in the ring for ages.  Back to them all brawling, Claudio got two on Hobbs after the others spilled outside.  Then took him down via lariat for another two.  Crowd chanting ‘meat’ for some of these blows.  Tony called it a ‘classic’ as Claudio landed on his feet out of a back body but was tripped down by Fletcher; BD saved the pin at two.

Hobbs grabbed a chair, ref took it away, Fletcher took out Danielson via tope and the heels removed the stuff off the announce desk.  Guess they finally remembered their jobs.  But kinda didn’t since Claudio was presumably late saving Danielson so Hobbs had to just sort of drop him at ringside.

Claudio then rushed Fletcher back in as the most obvious guy to lose took the pin.

Crazy hypothetical.  What if, what… if… you’d had the Family trying to attack Danielson all along, Ospreay speaking against it but never quite being there to stop it, all leading to the question of whether Will was really a good guy until he finally confirmed it at Dynasty after beating Danielson clean and earning the BCC’s respect.

Spinning off into all kinds of matches involving the Fam, the BCC and Will himself, providing tv clashes with an actual purpose.

All of which would’ve added to what was good action here.  But nothing more because the Family have been forgotten for most of the past six months and the story of them taking out Danielson had been going barely a couple hours.

Post-match, Takeshita just apparated in the ring, stomping away on the faces.  Crowd chanting for Mox, notably not Ospreay.  Takeshita gave Danielson a brainbuster on the ramp.  Claudio yelled for a doctor.  That better actually be a story and an injury Wednesday instead of just something for Danielson to be pissed off about.

And Ospreay better have something to say about all this.

Winner: Bryan Danielson & Claudio Castagnoli

 ________________________________________________________________

Next Dynamite:

  • Claudio vs Ospreay
  • Mox is back
  • Copeland & Willow vs Brody King & Julia Hart (they’re still advertising this; Julia hurt her shoulder on Rampage)
  • Elite vs Pac, Daniel Garcia and Penta
  • Mariah May vs Deonna Purrazzo
  • Hook/Jericho meeting
  • ‘Hear from’ Swerve; ‘Hear from’ Joe (because deciding on a subject is too difficult, could it perhaps be the world title or each other?)

Thumbs Up/Down

  • An action movie of an opener – you can have a good, interesting match with no story or issue as long as it’s bang, bang, bang
  • Toni vs AZM was good while it lasted
  • Some solid promo work from Athena, Velvet, Briscoe and Deonna (give or take the ‘not personal’ comment and it being heelish)
  • They didn’t even hit the bare minimum of ‘good wrestling’ Wednesday, they at least did that here

 *****

  • The whole show highlighted one of AEW’s main problems, which is that they have to produce more content than they have the bandwidth to make interesting
  • So that as a watcher of two out of three shows a week, there was a laundry list of things and people here I didn’t know/understand as they spent precious minutes pushing BotB 10 days before a ppv
  • One which they’ve failed all week to make even a middling deal, let alone ‘big’

Appreciate you reading.  Enjoy the rest of the weekend.

Paul Hemming
Paul Hemminghttps://h00kedon.weebly.com/
Paul Hemming got into AEW during the pandemic, lives in Liverpool, England, and is a huge Liverpool fan, Playstation player and history lover.

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