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Collision TV report for 10/07/2023

AEW Collision tonight comes to us from the Maverik Center (when you’re so maverick you deliberately spell the word wrong…) in Salt Lake City, Utah.  After last week drawing 327,000 & 0.08 in the 18-49 demo.  Both of those are lows for the show.

*****

  • Danielson listed all the match types he’s been in and now has to face a ‘24 year-old stud’ who wasn’t even born when he started wrestling
  • Fletcher talked about a week of ‘mental uncertainty’ and now he’s dropped into a match vs Bryan Danielson; he’s going to show out
  • Starks and Bill promised new champs
  • Eddie Kingston that a title shot against him isn’t an honor, it’s ‘straight pain’
  • FTR acknowledged being banged, bruised and Cash has a fractured rib, but it’s Saturday so they’re fighting

The production snafus started immediately – could hear the crowd too loudly before any of the promos even began.  Riccaboni on comms.

FTR vs Ricky Starks & Big Bill (Tag Titles)

Backstory: The heels pinned Dax in last week’s multi-man, in strange fashion

The heels immediately left Cash laying at ringside.  Bill sent Dax crashing out there too, but was ordered by Starks to target Cash instead, sending him through the announce table via chokeslam.

Before taking Dax back inside to face the heels two-on-one.  Ducking and dodging, he avoided the big man, no tag available so he looked for the Sharpshooter, Bill fought him off, planted him with a big boot, chokeslam following, he went for the pin but Starks ordered him to chokeslam Harwood again instead.  Rinse and repeat.  And even a fourth.  Cash still down outside.

Bill then held Dax in position for a Starks Spear and we have new champs.  Guess Wheeler’s injury is legit?  Or his legal issues are going to become a problem.  Wonder if they knew all this when they made the Bucks #1 contenders?

Winner: Ricky Starks & Big Bill

Riccaboni sent to a replay of Will Hobbs joining the Callis Fam on Dynamite (with a long delay between that and the footage actually airing) and attacking Omega and Jericho.

This was so rushed that while they showed the headshots to both (Jericho’s with the edge), they didn’t actually mention or emphasize them: no disgust from the announcers, no inset with talk of repercussions from the faces, nothing.  So essentially, no heat and no build.  Thanks for risking CTE though Kenny!

They showed a graphic for Hobbs facing Jericho Tuesday.

*****

A ref helped Cash to the back.  Danielson came out to a nice pop.

Bryan Danielson vs Kyle Fletcher

Backstory: They thought the match would be good (weren’t wrong tbf)

So is Kingston main eventing?  Toni?  Neither match is anywhere close.  These camera shots are all exceptionally tight so clearly not many tix have moved.  Nigel continues to insult Danielson from the booth – ‘Brittle Bryan’.

After circling and locking up, Fletcher overpowered Danielson to the mat.  The Dragon responded by wrestling Fletcher to the ground, the Aussie avoided a leg lock, fought his way up, smashed through BD with his shoulder then landed a stiff kick to the spine.

Reset.

Test of strength, Fletcher again powered the vet to the mat, he came back with a leg-trip, looking for the ankle lock, Fletcher immediately got the ropes.  Easy story so far of Fletcher having the advantage when they’re vertical but Danielson’s wrestling winning down on the mat.

(So what I thought was the live crowd at the outset is actually a weird background noise that’s been playing all show long – like low-level cheering – which has finally stopped about twenty minutes in.)

Collar and elbow, Danielson backed to the corner, break.  After a big chop, Fletcher landed a bodyslam and another kick to the spine.  Danielson eyed him warily, looked to work the arm, Fletcher countered into a headlock, sent into the ropes, BD kitchen sink and a little payback via kick to the spine.

Into a surfboard – always goes over well with the live crowd – before bending the youngster back while still in the hold to smash his face with rights, transitioning into shots from the mount – looked so violent – Fletcher covered up and got the ropes.

(Now there’s more background music, like another show’s intro is playing, immediately stopped, very distracting).

Fletcher hit shots to the gut, whipped BD in but dropped his head for a body drop and took a boot to the face, avoided a rushing Danielson, smashing him via running leg lariat, Danielson landed outside.  The Aussie went for a suicide dive and was guided into the barricade by the Dragon.  Looked painful as hell.

Both guys in a crumpled heap at ringside as the ads arrived.  Very good so far.

Fletcher back with a bodyslam, wrist clutched on Danielson’s injured arm, another, maintaining the grip, Danielson slipped behind, running lariat, both down.  Chants of ‘yes!’ from those in attendance, brutal yes! kicks with Fletcher on his knees, final one to the head, cover, two.

Stiff chops in the corner, kicks mixed in – god damn wrestling Bryan looks zero fun – rana from the top, the Dragon firing up, crowd too, running dropkick in the corner, a second, Fletcher no-sold, catching him with a dropkick of his own, brainbuster, two only.

TiA from the crowd as Fletcher fired off a flurry on the corner, Danielson sinking to the mat, whipped across, flipping over off the buckle only to be nailed via superkick but avoiding another leg lariat from Fletcher in the opposite corner.  Both down again.

Fletcher clutching his knee after that, crowd clapping, BD placed the injured limb over the middle rope, went after it with kicks, mixed with chops to the chest, Fletcher shoved him away, threw a superkick, caught into the ankle lock, dead center, dragged back from the ropes, crowd baying for the tap, Fletcher climbed to his feet but was dumped via bridging German for two.  Danielson maintaining his grip, back to their feet, Fletcher slipped behind, dragon suplex but too exhausted to capitalize.

Struggling to their feet, Danielson using the ropes, Fletcher took aim via leg lariat, went for his wrist clutch piledriver, Danielson escaped over the back, to the corner, boots up, he ran at Fletcher who planted him via Michinoku Driver for a near fall.  Right into a dragon sleeper, merged into a reverse ddt, maintaining the hold down onto the mat.  Brutal.

Fletcher set him atop the buckle, H&A to the injured shoulder, avalanche reverse-superplex, maintained back into the dragon sleeper, Danielson rolled through into a bridging pin using his feet to pin the Aussie’s shoulders to the mat.  Dude is so creative with his finishes.

This was really good.  Fletcher clearly has some fans backstage.  With reason.

The Gates of Agony attacked the second the bell rang; Claudio and Yuta hit the scene to send them packing.

Winner: Bryan Danielson

They went to the announcers in front of a broken announce desk before replaying the highlights from the tag title match.  And going backstage where the new champs were with Tony.  Bill said they whupped the ass of the best team in the world.  He and Ricky walk, talk and act like stars and deserve respect.

Starks said FTR aren’t getting any rematches.  Now they’re the ones everyone’s after, the real faces of Collision.  They are the new top dogs: ‘top dogs out’.  Good from Bill; great from Starks.

Bullet Club Gold vs Metalik, Gravity & Angelico

Backstory: None

White isn’t wrestling but is wearing the AEW Title.  Cardblade came with.  For some reason they gave the opposition their entrance so Gravity could do his lame moonwalking and Angelico could do his insatiably goofy dancing (dude has done MMA, could whip your ass, though looks like anything but).

The announcers debated who’d attacked White in the MJF mask.  As Gravity started against Austin, coming to mid-ring with his stupid walk – ‘He’s in slow motion, it’s a tactic!’ yelled/warned Juice from the apron.  Don’t think anyone’s done more this year to win me over.  He’s a riot.

Gunn mocked the walk then smacked him with a right.  Well deserved.  Gravity hit a springboard wristlock-takedown then an armdrag, torquing the arm before doing the stupid walk again to tag Metalik.  Juice in too, looking for a bodyslam, Metalik slipped behind, thrust kick to the gut, forearm, leg up in the corner, slingblade bulldog (basically a reverse slingblade), Juice kicked out before one.

Angelico in, working the arm, Juice hit a knee to the gut but couldn’t fight out of the hold.  Gravity came in off the top via stomp.  Juice hit a knee to the gut, tagged Colten, big dropkick leaving Gravity down.  Shots from the mount as the ads arrived.

Back to Robinson/Gravity, Juice hit snapping rights and a big left, Gravity down.  Austin demanded in, and came in to hit Road Dogg jabs.  Colten in now looking to carry on the jabs, Gravity kept crumpling to the match, playing possum, cradle for two, tag to Angelico, clotheslines for all, enziguri to Juice, stepover deathlock to Colten, snatching Austin into a god knows what at the same time.

Juice broke it up with a big left, knocked Metalik off the apron, was low-bridged out, managing to yell ‘Hi Nigel!’ as he nearly collided with the announcers, Austin blocked a Gravity springboard and Juice smashed him into the barricade.  Metalik cross body to both Gunns, hurracanrana to Austin, Austin blind tag to Juice as Metalik stumbled into a 3:10 to Yuma.  Juice is Loose for the win.

The rest of the BCG lay posing in the ring while White posed above with the belt.  He took a mic to call Cardblade into the ring.  They’re back on Collision and have brought some gold.

Before moving on to MJF.  A middling chant briefly kicked up.  White told Max he’d lead by example.  ‘Example one’: he’s here on Collision and Max isn’t.  Is he home nursing his wounds?  Maybe Cole’s?  White expected MJF to care, to show up for his belt, ‘after all isn’t this the thing that matters most to you…? No’.

‘Example two’: a champ needs challengers, he’s facing Hangman on Title Tuesday.  He’s 3-0 against Page.  So Page hasn’t earned a shot, thus the match’ll be non-title.  ‘What do they call it here?’, ‘An Eliminator!’ yelled Austin’.  Love.  White mockingly repeated it.

And at the end of it, Page’ll do what he does so well, ‘breathe with the Switchblade’.  He told MJF to relax, sit back, take notes, ‘I’ve got it from here pal, because I do it better than you and every-body knows it’.  Damn that’s a promo.  That’s also called swagger, carries himself so well.  The title hasn’t been made to feel near this important during MJF’s entire reign.

‘If you ain’t down with that, we have two words for you, Gunns… up’.

Winner: Bullet Club Gold

Nick Wayne package.  Allin was his big brother but left and he didn’t know when he was coming back.  The best way to get back at him was join his enemy.  And in just a week under Christian he’s realized he’s the father figure he’s always needed.  Like Allin wasn’t there for him, ‘I won’t be there for you’.

This was good.  Effective.

Acclaimed & Billy Gunn vs Iron Savages & Jacked Jameson (Trios Titles)

Backstory: None whatsoever

Are they making this card up as they go?  Swear this was not mentioned earlier in the show:  another high point for these belts.  The Iron Savages came out in full 1980s mode, Jacked Jameson shouting loudly into the mic with lots of words that rhyme – ‘dreamin and creamin’.

Gunn flexed a bit then was beaten down, to the heels’ corner, big shoulder tackle from the Savage who isn’t Bronson or Jameson.  Tag to Bowens, he and Billy did the double team scissors elbow.  Bowens then got into a slugging match (the lad has him some great looking punches) and was winning until Bronson came in to flapjack him.  Don’t think there was a tag.  Can live with the ins-and-outs for flurries but a lack of tags just sucks.  Why wouldn’t a fresh babyface just come in to replace Bowens? #ThingsJRwouldsay

Break.

Back to Bowens struggling, seeking a tag, cut off, Gunn knocked off the apron.  Bronson paused to shake his ass then missed a moonsault.  Riccaboni made a lot of Heavy D & the Boyz references (Now that we Found Love is a lot like Toni Storm tbf) as Caster tagged in, running through the heels with rights, to the top, cross body onto Jameson for two.

The other four were fighting around ringside, the Iron Savages came in to hit a double team spinebuster to Caster, Bowens saved the belts at two.  On this ‘must-see edition of Collision,’ per Riccaboni.  Agree to disagree.

Gunn and Caster landed a double suplex to Bronson, Bowens in for Scissor Me Timbers, Jameson then wandered in to take the losing pin.  If you’ve ever seen an Acclaimed match, you know how.  They all seem to go exactly like this.

Winner: the Acclaimed & Billy Gunn

They played a highlight reel from all of Toni Storm’s interviews with RJ City.  Including her revelation from Wednesday that she’s ‘timeless’.

*****

Then showed highlights of Shane Taylor and Keith Lee teaming in the past with voiceovers of their current issues.  Lee said he’s not who Taylor will make his name off of.  Taylor that he hates that people think Lee’s better than him.  Lee ended with ‘Run’.  So clearly that’s a new catchphrase.

Toni Storm vs Kiera Hogan

Backstory: None

Storm had her black and white entrance again and was handing out scripts to fans and announcers – some of which Riccaboni read: ‘Toni Storm’s entrance is beginning and the crowd is enthralled’.  It continued in this vein.  Cannot say she’s lacking ideas, the gimmick’s far more creative than almost anything else in the company.

Hogan’s entrance music got zip, zilch, zero reaction.  Hard on the girl when Storm’s basically a babyface and so is she.

Storm handed her a script too.  And asked if she minded following it.  Hogan ripped it up – the crowd booed, Storm gave her the ‘Hoooow dare you!’ then ran through her with a lariat and stomped away as the crowd chanted her name.  She missed the hip attack, Hogan hit a slap and hip attack in the ropes, thrust kick, two count.

The script said Toni would win immediately per Riccaboni.  It’s an entertaining gimmick but that’s a bit too cute.

Storm hit back with a hairmare, a second, hip attack coming, very fake looking: Hogan had already left the ring when Storm arrived yet she tried it anyway.  Hogan came back in off the top via cross body for another two.  Individual fans can be heard.

Storm suckered Hogan in and tripped her into the buckle then knocked her off the apron with a hip attack.  Then, like Weds, she sent us to the ads – ‘We’ll be right back, stay tuned’.  And was hitting Hogan with a ‘titty slap’ as we went to break.

Hogan got a boot up in the corner, dropkick from the middle rope, Storm down in the corner.  Hogan hit a hip attack, basement dropkick, another two count.

Storm got a two count and gave the ref a loud: ‘Hooooow dare you!’ after, as she did Weds.  So that’s clearly intended to become a spot late in her matches.  Crowd didn’t join in this time but will learn to.  Hogan took advantage with a step-up legdrop/curb stomp.  Another two.  Storm slipped behind, bit Kiera’s ass, release German, ‘Mr Khan I’m ready for my (something)’, vogue pose, hip attack, Storm Zero.

This needed to be waaaay shorter.  Not because of the action, but because the crowd didn’t care a lick about Hogan and didn’t believe she’d win for a second.  So were dead.

Winner: Toni Storm

Renee backstage with Ruby Soho.  Who lost to Shida on Rampage.  Renee asked where that left her.  She claimed she had Shida beat when Shida’s ‘fat fingers’ took out the ref.  But she’ll be cheering Saraya on from ringside Wednesday.  Renee then told her she was banned.  She freaked out but then said Saraya doesn’t need her: ‘there’s a reason she’s the champ’.

Yep, they had a show in London and Jamie Hayter’s injured.

Eddie Kingston vs Komander (ROH Title)

Backstory: Komander won a 4-way last night

Weren’t we assured ROH was going away behind a paywall?

JR was out for this one.  As was Eddie, to his usual nice pop.  Chants for Kingston as they locked up, he shoved Komander away, repeat.  The youngster struck back via armdrag, ducked a backfist, was shoved away again but landed another armdrag.

They keep coming together then resetting as one gets the advantage.

Another takedown saw Eddie take a powder, he did the Joe ‘walk away’ to avoid a 619 through the ropes.  But was snatched into an Octopus stretch as he returned, still in it down to the mat, he finally got the ropes after struggling.  Komander then made the mistake of chopping the champ and was smashed to the corner, machine gun chops, suplex back out.

Komander took a chop but rebounded off the ropes, fired up, asked for another, ducked it, fired shots, corkscrew cross body off the ropes for two, beautiful move, running shooting star for another.

Eddie to the outside, Komander launched himself off the apron and over the ringpost to crash through the champ.  Then headed upstairs, 450, another close call.  Eddie recovered to catch him up there, big chop, a battle ensued atop the buckle until Kingston landed a superplex, countered into a cross body by Komander for another two.

Eddie came back via uranage for two; short arm lariat, same result.  He missed the backfist, was countered into a sloppy ddt, la magistral, Eddie got the ropes, rolled his weight back to get two then hit the Uriken for the win.

This was wrestling for the sake of wrestling.  Pretty good, but if Komander’s not being built for anything, he shouldn’t push someone on Kingston’s level like this.  As per the last match, the crowd didn’t buy Komander winning.  Not surprisingly.

Kingston helped Komander up, bowed and pointed to the challenger, the crowd cheered.

Winner: Eddie Kingston

They ran through the Dynamite card, none of which they’ve done a thing to build here – no interviews, they haven’t even made anything out of Mox’s return.

Of course we’re ending with Copeland again.  Might say something for me, might say something for them, but I’ve forgotten he’s coming on both shows now.

He came out to a nice pop, beckoned the crowd to make some noise, then put over JR for signing him back in the day.  Ross mentioned they had breakfast this morning.  Copeland then said things didn’t go to plan Wednesday.  He’s confused because the whole reason he came here was to team with Christian.

Again mentioned that he’d lost nine years but come back through hard work and persistence.  The same was true of Cage for seven years.  Yet here they are and Cage doesn’t want to team.  Cage had stopped taking his calls lately and he’s not the best guy, he’s a ‘dick’ but Copeland loves him anyway.  He said Cage was a Bond Villian, so if Saurus is his ‘heavy’ then Nick Wayne must be his hairless Persian cat that sits in his lap.  The crowd chanted this, Copeland said if they do that every time they see Wayne, ‘I’ll be smiling’.

But ultimately he’s out here for answers so beckoned Cage to come out.  Christian appeared on the big screen to tell Copeland he doesn’t call the shots.  As for his demanding an answer, it won’t come tonight but on Dynamite Tuesday.  He’ll be there ‘but are you gonna make it?’.

Luchasaurus’ music hit, Nick Wayne came with him, in that same sweater.  He took a boot from Copeland, Saurus was Speared off the apron, Edgecution to the youngster, Spear coming, Saurus snuck back in and chokeslammed him.  Apparently Luchasaurus has a lariat called The Extinction and he hit Copeland with it.

Then grabbed a chair, Copeland down and out.  Conchairto coming.  Darby Allin’s music hit ‘well he better get here quickly’ yelled Nigel, who mustn’t have watched Sunday.  Allin appeared from behind with a chair and smacked Saurus.  It’s a miracle this dude’s shoulder isn’t ruined.  Wayne cowered and begged off, Allin hesitated, turned his back to go after Luchasaurus, Wayne hit him with a shotgun dropkick and Luchasaurus flung him shoulder-first into the buckle then ripped away the brace.

They positioned Allin’s arm for a conchairto, Wayne hit it.  What a dumb babyface.  He already screwed you Sunday, warned you earlier in a promo and you turned your back on him.  Possible Allin does need surgery and this writes him off?  The injury list’s growing again.

_________________________________________________________________

Next Dynamite (Title Tuesday):

  • Swerve Strickland vs Bryan Danielson (#1 contender for TNT Title)
  • Adam Copeland vs Luchasaurus
  • Saraya vs Hikaru Shida (Women’s Title)
  • Rey Fenix vs Jon Moxley (International Title)
  • Powerhouse Hobbs vs Chris Jericho
  • Jay White vs Hangman Adam Page (Yes please)

Next Collision:

  • Christian Cage vs Swerve/Danielson (TNT Title)

Thumbs Up/Down

  • Danielson vs Fletcher
  • Jay White is awesome – serious, wants the title, wants to be the champ, doesn’t want to make us laugh, wants to be the best; issue is, everything he said was true
  • The Edge and Christian story is interesting if you can ignore Copeland being surprised the biggest scumbag in the company isn’t a good guy
  • Outside of that some pretty good wrestling I guess, shame none of it mattered, meant anything or is going anywhere

*****

  • Another show without any storyline hooks ahead of time, full of predictable finishes, that no longer feels different to Dynamite. And seemed like they threw in the towel against tough competition, particularly that second hour, not a second of which you need to see
  • As shown by a crowd who were enthusiastic – check em’ during the Danielson match – but spent most of the last hour stone silent

To sum up – hour one = good and stuff happened; hour two = boring and nothing happened

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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