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AEW Navel-Gazing Thread Number Two


Gordlow
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On 9/30/2022 at 10:18 AM, twiztor said:

i'm dumbfounded every time i hear somebody say that Rage Against the Machine was great until they went political.

Seriously.  What machine did these people think the band was raging against?  The washer?  The refrigerator?  Maybe Super Strong?

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The morning DJ from Philly’s alternative rock station when I was a kid staged a walkout stunt in response to RATM supporting the Free Mumia movement. I don’t know how much of that was just for publicity, but he was a good twenty years older than the station’s demo and he ended up eventually doing sports talk radio in Florida, which adds up. 

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On 10/2/2022 at 1:33 AM, Technico Support said:

Seriously.  What machine did these people think the band was raging against?  The washer?  The refrigerator?  Maybe Super Strong?

This reminds me that there was a filler track called "Rage Against The Answering Machine" on some album, I forget the artist and the track wasn't an actual song, but maybe that's the, uh, "answer"?

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  • 3 weeks later...

I sometimes wonder what effect the live Rampage tapings with the 'double your pleasure double your fun' (see 2 hours of) Dark tapings have effected this downturn in ticket sales. I also wonder how the exhausting Elevation/Dynamite/Rampage tapings have effected the downturn. 

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On 10/22/2022 at 6:45 AM, HarryArchieGus said:

I sometimes wonder what effect the live Rampage tapings with the 'double your pleasure double your fun' (see 2 hours of) Dark tapings have effected this downturn in ticket sales. I also wonder how the exhausting Elevation/Dynamite/Rampage tapings have effected the downturn. 

That would make a lot of sense. 

I think about it like this: There's folks like you and I, like a lot of folks on here and other people we know... Let's call us "passionate fans of pro wrestling in general and AEW in particular" The ones we know and like, the ones we haven met yet... quite a  few of us, all around the world. 

Over the last year-plus (or however long) since the show went back out on the road, if AEW came to town - or anywhere within driving distance - all those passionate fans were online, day one, scrambling to get tickets. For themselves and for friends and family. And judging by the road reports I have heard and read, even for a lot of the passionate fans four plus hours of pro wrestling is an awful lot of a good thing and following  that up with a long drive home with some heavy traffic at the start of the journey...

I could easily see those same passionate fans making the trip without (as many) friends and family along for the ride this year. You know, maybe the kids don't need to come this time, maybe my buddy from work has other plans...

Also: I kind of think they are swerving away from catering so directly to their passionate hardcore indie/Japan/weird wrestling fanbase. We still get Danielson vs Garcia or, like, Kingston vs Takeshita type stuff aimed right at our bullseyes... We still get deeply awesome very niche appeal stuff like Cutler vs Pretty Peter and Abadon vs Freya and on and on. 

But the sense I kind of get is that AEW was more like Shake Shack or In-N-Out or something, a plucky independent company with a hardcore passionate big-niche crowd who were really into the good stuff but now they are perhaps striving to be more like Burger King, a challenger brand with designs on a much broader appeal. Tony Khan has said as much, in interviews.

Which is fine. I do not begrudge them their success. It's still appointment viewing for me. They still reliably hit my personal bullseye week in and week out. They are leaning a little harder on the viral stuff and catchphrases, maybe pushing some of the ex-WWE and WWE-wannabe personalities a little harder than some of the the ex-indie and weirder ones. 

Whatever. I still get tons of what I want to see 

I'm still a fan. A big fan. I wore my AEW hoodie today. With pride. I was stoked the weather was cool enough for me to put it on again today for the first time since maybe May. 

Not sure if I'm quite so passionate any more. Which is fine. Being frothing-at-the-mouth passionate for three years for any kind of pop culture is pretty impressive. And I'm still well into this current Burger King-ish  AEW. (A&W AEW)?

FTR are fighting for New Japan in Osaka next week. I might go. I might not. That kind of surprises me. If AEW came over here, but only to Tokyo... I might not go. If you had asked me last year, there would have been zero doubt. I 100 percent would have made the long and costly trip to Tokyo. I'd have bought my NJPW tickets the day FTR in Osaka was announced.

AEW still rules. AEW is still my favourite non-local-indie pro wrestling company. I still very much want to see a live AEW show some day. But, it's maybe no longer quite a "bucket list" item.

So: I could see non-passionate fans maybe not wanting to watch that much wrestling being a big factor in the ticket sales downturn. I could also see even passionate fans being less eager to make a long trip and book a hotel or fight traffic late at night...

 

Edited by Gordlow
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@Gordlowa lot of that is spot on for me, and it's not just wrestling. For me to go a to concert in downtown Austin is going to mean $20 in parking (and having little to no drinks) or $60 in rides, $20-30 for a show that would've been $10-15 pre-pandemic, oh and speaking of pandemic an elevated risk of catching Covid. There's also the fact that my grocery bill is 10-15% higher now than it was back at the start of the year. I really don't think people are accounting for how much inflation is eating away at entertainment spending.

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On 10/21/2022 at 5:45 PM, HarryArchieGus said:

I sometimes wonder what effect the live Rampage tapings with the 'double your pleasure double your fun' (see 2 hours of) Dark tapings have effected this downturn in ticket sales. I also wonder how the exhausting Elevation/Dynamite/Rampage tapings have effected the downturn. 

Gordlow's post below explained it in more detail, but yes I think these long events are a potential detriment to more casual fans. I went to a show back in January and enjoyed myself despite it not being a great card on paper. The Dark taping started just after 7 and the Rampage taping concluded at almost 11. A ton of people started leaving after Dynamite was done, and I can't say I blamed them. It's a weeknight and if you've got to work in the morning or have younger kids then that's a late night after a long event and potentially a ways to drive home after. My ticket was one of the cheaper options at $50 (plus $25 of ticketmaster fees) and parking would have cost another $20 had I not walked a few blocks and concessions at these arenas don't come cheap either. Those costs would have likely been even higher in a larger city. On one hand four hours of wrestling is a good value for that much, but I think splitting their weekly events into two shows would be a good idea.

 

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20 minutes ago, HumanChessgame said:

Gordlow's post below explained it in more detail, but yes I think these long events are a potential detriment to more casual fans. I went to a show back in January and enjoyed myself despite it not being a great card on paper. The Dark taping started just after 7 and the Rampage taping concluded at almost 11. A ton of people started leaving after Dynamite was done, and I can't say I blamed them. It's a weeknight and if you've got to work in the morning or have younger kids then that's a late night after a long event and potentially a ways to drive home after. My ticket was one of the cheaper options at $50 (plus $25 of ticketmaster fees) and parking would have cost another $20 had I not walked a few blocks and concessions at these arenas don't come cheap either. Those costs would have likely been even higher in a larger city. On one hand four hours of wrestling is a good value for that much, but I think splitting their weekly events into two shows would be a good idea.

 

It's tricky as the roster is so big and they are tied to a specific tv time. It's up to people if they want to come early to see Elevation right? But that might be the only chance to see Danhausen or Ruby Soho or whoever. They are doing more live Rampages right now but I get the sense it's much bigger lift for the backstage team, plus if it's on the east coast, that's 10 - 11 pm regardless.

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In addition to economic reasons (inflation plus possible recession) saturation of live entertainment, they are hitting the same markets over and over again. They are coming back to LA again (and last time they ran Ontario which is a socal C market as well)  with out hitting Norcal yet

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The long shows running too late is an issue why I don't go. I take mass transit to the venues. I need to be leaving for the last train home between 11:45 and 12:45 depending on if they are in Queens, Newark, or Brooklyn. The no cameras allowed policy also keeps me away. The damn fans standing up and holding up signs even higher is just the cherry on top of reasons that I don't go.

I like the TV for the most part and really want to go, but I just know that I would not like the live experience.

UFC is just as bad. Dana White thinks that the whole world is Las Vegas. I left one show before the decision was announced, left one show before the main event started, and stayed for one show to see the main event, which led to me having to drink until 4 AM and then wait in Penn Station for 2 hours hanging with the bums waiting for the first train in the morning.

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  • 3 weeks later...

This is kind of continuing a (pleasant and hopefully interesting) discussion I was having with Matt on the Dynamite thread.

I am kind of under the impression that a PPV is still where a pro wrestling promotion showcases the wrestlers, belts, angles etc etc that are *most important* at the time. So Saraya and Jeff Jarrett being featured on the upcoming PPV and FTR and Orange Cassidy being left off seems worrisome to me.

 

Maybe that's old-fashioned thinking.

And it's obviously not possible to book a PPV that is all things to all people.

However:

Assuming a PPV was still where you woulf want to showcase the best of your promotion, and assuming you were in Tony Khan's shoes, how would YOU book Full Gear 2022? Or, next year's first big PPV?

Acknowledging that we don't have to deal with the actual human beings being booked, and their wants and needs. Just playing to our own personal tastes entirely. Whether that be wanting Danielson on top, hating the Elite, not being in favour of the ROH acquisition, preferring shoot style, wanting more stories, being nostalgic for the weird early days of the promotion...

whatever your deal might be.

purpose is 2-fold.

1 - see what and who everyone prefers, personally.

2 - develop some empathy and compassion for the booker.

It's really hard! Even with obvious people I like, such as Hanger and Stat, out with injuries, it's impossible to fit everyone I want on the PPV. I need ten matches on the main card and four on the pre-show, some of them over-stuffed. It's too much! 

Realistically, I'd have to shift a couple of matches to TV the week before or after. Which only goes to prove Matt's point.

 "Rules"

You have been booker since before the last PPV. We can assume matches have been built to. Maybe you have some different championship titles. And champions. Maybe you keep the same ones.

If you hate long PPVs, maybe book fewer matches.

You can bring in anyone that AEW might realistically have access to. I'd bring in a few friends and favourites and it hypothetically bums me out I can't bring in more.

Up to you whether or not you have a magic wand that can heal injuries, make people forgive Punk, free people from contracts elsewhere, etc etc

Here's my best attempt: 

Spoiler

Main Event AEW Title Match: Eddie Kingston vs Samoa Joe 

(MJF on commentary)

Semi-Main AEW Title Match: Athena vs Hayter 

ROH Title Eliminator Match (last man standing keeps the belt):

Jericho, Garcia, Sammy, Parker (w/Hager) vs Dragon, Mox, Claudio, Wheeler

(Menard and Regal on commentary)

Osaka Pro Title Match: Zeus vs Nicky Boy

AEW Tag Title Match: Emi & Mei vs Jaguar & Iroha

AEW Tag Title Match: FTR vs Acclaimed vs SioG vs Buddy & King (w/ Julia)

AEW Trios Titles: Orange & Best Friends vs Archer, MiSu, and ZSJ

Tag # 1 contenders match: Bear Country vs Gates of Agony

Elite vs Death Triangle (keeping that one)

AEW Trios Title exciting opening match: Willow, Sakazaki, & Riho vs Storm, Shida, & Deeb

Pre-Show:

Big match to get eyes on the pre-show: Sting, Darby, Wardlow vs Hobbs, Butcher, Blade

Dotonbori Pro Title Kinron (w/Kuuga) vs JD Drake (guest ref Verne Seibert)

Dustin, Bandido, Fuego, Silver vs Pretty Peter, Angelico, Luther, Serpentico

Slim J & Boudreaux vs Dante & Fox

 

 

Obviously my AEW would already be out of business...

And I am sure I forgot someone great and three ladies' matches out of fourteen is not enough. (Edit: Starks. I forgot Ricky Starks. For one). (And Hook. I stink. It's impossible).

But I hope other people here wanna play this game, too.

Edited by Gordlow
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9 minutes ago, Gordlow said:

I am kind of under the impression that a PPV is still where a pro wrestling promotion showcases the wrestlers, belts, angles etc etc that are *most important* at the time. So Saraya and Jeff Jarrett being featured on the upcoming PPV and FTR and Orange Cassidy being left off seems worrisome to me.

I'm gonna play the game and book a card, but I do just want to remark that Matt Hardy and Isaiah Cassidy being on Revolution doesn't necessarily mean the various Family Office mishmashes were in better standing than FTR. 

Ok, a card. Gonna take it from the last PPV, aftermath included and make some changes. I'm not booking an Adam Page vs Moxley match on TV, so I'm going with the assumption that Page is healthy and available -- haven't decided if I'm using him or not. Mox is enjoyingthe tail end of a long and well-earned break. Andrade's served his time and is back, because I definitely want to use him and I've decided to hand out punishments only so long as they're not too inconvenient for me -- I assume everyone knows this and I've lost their respect. 

Spoiler

AEW World Championship
Darby Allin (c) vs MJF 

We need a new champ post-All Out. It's not Moxley because we had a summer of him and I need a new look. It's not Danielson, his services are required elsewhere. It's not Omega, he was slated for trios and he's presumably serving a suspension when I'm belting someone. Jericho was in the running, but All Out leaves me with a scenario where the main event here needs to be MJF cashing in the chip. Face MJF vs heel Jericho is a new look for something with a lot of history, but people already got plenty of that feud so Jericho will need to go elsewhere. Some version of a tournament leads to Darby-Bryan at Grand Slam with Darby improbably going over. MJF works through the new layers of his character while lording his win at last year's Full Gear over Darby.

Fight Without Honor
#1 Contendership for the Ring of Honor World Championship
Bryan Danielson vs Eddie Kingston

Eddie's business with Sammy eventually folds back into BCC-JAS drama, and tensions resume over Eddie's willingness to set Bryan on fire. Meanwhile, tensions have risen in the BCC over Danielson's desire to be champion. I'm looking to fold these issues together and get us to Kingston vs Claudio to carry the Ring of Honor PPV.

Dr Britt Baker DMD vs Jamie Hayter

I've expressed a desire many times in the past for Tony to hit the gas and strike while the iron's hot. I'm not fighting the obvious. The partnership implodes and Hayter's explicitly the top babyface people want her to be. 

AEW Trios Championship
Best Friends and Orange Cassidy (c) vs The Elite

People will have been waiting to see the Elite and they're cleared of wrongdoing, so the PPV is the right place for them to resume their trios business. Tony had the correct two possible teams fight for the vacant belts in terms of who the fans would want to see with them, but I'm out on Lucha Bros right now so they're lower on my depth chart. Congrats to the Best Friends on their promotion.

Sting and Claudio Castagnoli vs Chris Jericho and Sammy Guavara

Jericho's got to be on the card and I'd like to see him versus Sting. Issues between the two begin with Jericho not winning the title tournament, which leads to Sting being sucked into BCC-JAS drama. I'd want to get a singles match out of Sting, but I'm trying not to be greedy. Jericho pretends he's always hated Sting for some reason, and Sammy gets an ROH title match out of it somewhere along the way.

Ring of Honor World Tag Team Championship
FTR (c) vs Rush and Andrade El Idolo 

I want to see it so I'm booking it. You might be able to talk me into saving it for Final Battle and booking Taven and Bennett here. Either way, gonna be pretty good. FTR fans eat well under my regime. 

AEW Women's World Championship
Toni Storm (c) vs The Bunny

Considered going for outside talent here, but I'm clearly not getting enough use out of the in-house talent so Bunny's getting a push. On quick notice too, because this is Penelope Ford if she were healthy. 

AEW World Tag Team Championship
The Acclaimed (c) vs Swerve in Our Glory

Probably the correct match here, but I'm going back and forth on whether I'd have had Acclaim win at Grand Slam or here.

Okay, now for the pre-show. Let's get silly.

The Last Rodeo Makes a Stop in AEW
Mickie James vs Serena Deeb

I want to see it and it'd be a fine addition to the retirement tour.

TNT Championship
Wardlow (c) vs Brody King

Wardlow needs a strong win and I like Brody too much to bench him till Malakai and Buddy are ready to come back into the fold.

NJPW Strong Openweight Tag Team Championship
Motor City Machine Guns (c) vs Gunn Club

Match I'd enjoy. Good match for a tag team I'm actively grooming for elevation. Good win that keeps our friends in Impact and NJPW happy-ish. All the while I'm actively looking to poach Shelley and Sabin for myself...

Eight match main card + three match pre-show is more than enough for me. One gimmick match, make it count you lunatics. Any intentional blood outside of Bryan-Kingston and the main event gets a fine, because I'm also Vince McMahon? I just keep upsetting my imaginary employees independent contractors.

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I agree with you and @Matt D with parts of what you’re saying. I enjoy the blowoff to a mid-card feud being on television instead of a PPV, with the assumption that on tv the performers have more time to give the match justice. Best example is the parking lot brawl between Santana & Ortiz vs Best Friends. BUT the ppv’s are so long that maybe it would have been the same match? I still think it can stand out as special on television. Hopefully the booking can be good enough to capitalize on these moments.

The part I agree with the Dark Gorder is that the percentage of AEW television I’m less interested in has risen. I don’t want to go as far as saying I don’t like, but there are segments ands and pieces of AEW that are not for me. The Acclaimed is very fun, I think the Daddy Ass stuff is funny, and they are the most over part of the show. Of course they should be champs, it’s common sense booking that you ride with them while they are hot. I don’t dislike them, just not for me. Swerve in Our Glory are great wrestlers. I believe Swerve is responsible for cool stuff like Rick Ross showing up. He could fill the Cody roll of celebrity contacts. Keith Lee is a monster and that’s neat. I don’t care for their creation as a tag team, getting the titles soon because they’re big names (when tag team wrestling was in the company’s ethos), then have it clear their sole purpose is to break up. It’s ironic being a storyline I tend to not like and I loved Omega-Hangman, but they did the angle to such subtle perfect that it won me over. Maybe this will too? Idk, the bar is high because this is what Tony wanted instead of the clear path to Bucks vs FTR III. Yes, I know the main reason that didn’t happen is because the Elite trios reign, but jeez we already added so many belts. That storyline needed to happen right then in there? So much is just rushed. The moments that are enjoyable come from letting stories breath and develop. Unlike Christmas Gordament, I like MJF. But I’m not sure if it’s figuring out the path post-Punk (after an already awkward Forbidden Door run) but the booking has been weird. Stokley and the Ethan Pages, the Devil is maybe good, Mox is clearly confused and ready for a very well needed vacation. Poor Saraya fumbled her promo(s) and now Brit is the promotion’s hometown face? Sheesh. Speaking of sheesh, Hayter going for the title is cool, but the awkwardness of the dropped turn against Baker is just bad booking. But no, Saraya vs Brit (when supposedly, she wasn’t fully cleared when she signed?) is the better match. More importantly and off topic of me but hung about stuff, let me bitch about something else. Toni Storm is so cool. She looks like a million bucks with the rock and roll and the sunglasses and the rocking out. Why does she feel like she’s just there. One minute vignette of her in a cool car talking about how much the title means to her or a heartfelt interview about making the fans proud. Maybe this is up to her to stand out, but has she been given an opportunity to as a champion? Or does she not cut the minimum women segment standard? Ok, back on topic to bitching. Samoa Joe as a heel is so much better as a face and we will all prosper because of this. But did that turn feel rushed? Did they just team to turn? Am I just bitching too much? I started typing this with more to complain about but I forgot and no I will not spell check I’m on too much of a roll. Oh, I remember. Jeff Jarrett. Dang it.

——-

Willie @Gordlowman, is this a within the current realm that has been created or a dream card? I shall make a cute card for fun.

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  • 2 weeks later...

couldn't sleep last night, and spent WAY too much time thinking about the AEW title situation. The most concerning to me was the lack of top black talent. Who is the most likely first black (male) champion? 

to me, there's no obvious person that's in line. that's a problem. i am not sure if it's an AEW problem or a larger pro wres problem, but a problem nonetheless. The only person i see being even potentially slotted into a top position is Keith Lee, but so far he has been positioned nowhere near that level. I would be ecstatic if Powerhouse Hobbs was this potential champion, but he is even further away and would need a gigantic push to even be viable.

what say you?

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1 hour ago, twiztor said:

couldn't sleep last night, and spent WAY too much time thinking about the AEW title situation. The most concerning to me was the lack of top black talent. Who is the most likely first black (male) champion? 

to me, there's no obvious person that's in line. that's a problem. i am not sure if it's an AEW problem or a larger pro wres problem, but a problem nonetheless. The only person i see being even potentially slotted into a top position is Keith Lee, but so far he has been positioned nowhere near that level. I would be ecstatic if Powerhouse Hobbs was this potential champion, but he is even further away and would need a gigantic push to even be viable.

what say you?

Yeah, it's definitely a problem, (and where did Scorpio Sky disappear to after losing the TNT title), but Swerve may be closer to that level than most people realise. I mean, if they wanted to do it. Over all, yes, they need to improve this. But who is available that could potentially reach that level soon, that they don't already have on the roster?

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Interesting (and challenging) question, twiztor. 

AEW is pretty good at heating up and building up dudes with talent. I think a lot of people maybe didn't think Hangman was on Jericho's level three years ago but he's up there as a top guy now. MJF started out as Cody's understudy. The Acclaimed and Orange were unknown to me three years ago but now make perfect sense as championship title holders.

The talent is obviously there already, if we are specifically looking for, uh, a racially diverse group of  dudes good enough to get that level of push. 

For example: I'd imagine you could heat Limitless up to that level in six months to a year if you needed to. Maybe faster. Swerve or Hobbs don't feel all that far off to me, either. Maybe Darius or one of The Acclaimed a couple of years down the road if they can stay healthy?

Also: I think anyone who's listened to enough Nofx (like, say, me) might be inclined to consider MJF AEW's first non-white mens world champion. 

EDIT: Based on, like, 30 seconds of him LAYING IT IN that I watched, Shane Taylor has eventual champ potential!

W/R/T the fantasy booking. It's been a couple of weeks. I was hoping more people might play.

I did mine as a basic thought experiment in this way: thought of all the healthy available AEW wrestlers I would like to watch in PPV matches and try to cram them all in plus some of my friends and personal favourites and a couple of other interesting outsiders. I ended up with an overlong and overcrowded show and also forgot Hook, Starks, and others. I didn't wanna cheat by checking the AEW roster page. Should have. But couldn't have possibly crammed everyone in without cutting my friends and personal favourites from the show. And even then it would have been obviously overstuffed.

I believe it would have been a lot of really good wrestling. But also A LOT of wrestling. 

I think John from Cincinnati put together a MUCH better card than I did. I would happily pay to watch that exact card. He even fit in a couple of interesting outsiders without overloading the card. I think he approached  it from a different, more logical angle.

My main takeaway going forward is to maybe have a little more sympathy for the booker in terms of: maybe understanding a bit more why the PPVs go so long while also not including everyone I want to see. 

And also why even with a lot of belts it is not possible everyone I like (or find deserving) to hold or even contend for one at any given time.

And reinforcing that for me at least it's realistic to want to have friends around.

It would, I have to imagine, be really challenging to find the balance point where you are running a successful business while keeping it as much a labour of love as possible.

It also underlines what an absolute motherload of talent that roster is.

I think it's a worthwhile thought experiment and also a fun kind of mental masturbation. I'd encourage more folks to give it a shot. 

Edited by Gordlow
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I think you could get Keith Lee there quickly. Fans never stopped loving him, and he never looked weak. He has the years of indie credibility with a fandom that values that as much as his time in Connecticut. Hell, have him refer to that time and large black men too often being stereotyped as savages and monsters. Of course, with MJF thinking he’s the next Piper things could get really bad...

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The Obvious answer is Ricky Starks which I'm surprised no one remembered actually has a title shot coming up, Hobbs I see more of a monster of a month that a champ. Guy who works with the guy makes the money (I could see him beating Ricky so Ricky can win it back).

Keith lee is a bit older and with the extra weight I wonder how much tread is left on the tires. (I wouldn't mind seeing him drop some weight just for his own long term health and to extend his career) 

Guys like Dante Martin and Bowens are your young lions who could obviously get there.

And as a Non Black POC I could see board favorite Lard Lad getting to the top of the card in short order

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Derp, I’m sorry I never posted mine, Arizona Gordinal. I’m copying @John from Cincinnati and basing mine off rebooking from the results previous PPV to book Full Gear

Spoiler

Mox vs Hangman

In theory, if you build this as the PPV match then Page doesn’t get hurt. Mox puts Hangman over cleanly in a hard hitting bout. MJF “cashes in” his chip. Heartbreaking the fans by screwing over Page. 

 

We never get the wishy washy stuff that turns Maxwell kind of endearing to the fans. In fact, maybe we don’t really see MJF in the build up to this. We have Stokley talking him up. Give the Firm a less dumb name (The Agency of Stokley and Friedman?). Make deals with Indy promotions and have the stable members win gold and squash local dorks. We get Dark Order vs the ASF as a traveling attraction all across America. 

 

Build up the next TV special as MJF vs Hangman. Page can afford to lose that and be known as the shortest AEW reign to add to his series of moments to keep him bummed.

 

 

Toni Storm vs Nyla Rose

I liked the real way they went with Nyla vs Jade. I wouldn’t have thought of it, so I’m not going that route. Props to Tony for recognizing Nyla’s personality and evolving her character as a trickster.

 

How I would do this is sadly the trope of first big challenger for Toni Storm being overcoming a monster. I would use Rose’s personality to antagonize Storm for the interim title. Not good enough to be a real champ. Have Toni defend the honor of fighting for the fans and working to make it prestigious and work hard for the fans. When Toni Storm wins, AEW drops the stupid “Interim” and everyone is happy.

 

I know it’s silly to have a whole feud revolve around bringing honor to the interim and the dropping that word immediately. I look at it as a necessity to make the match itself matter and admittedly righting a wrong without outright saying it was a mistake. The ship will be on the right course and the fans will appreciate us for it.

 

 

Claudio Castagnoli vs Chris Jericho

This is where Chris wins the ROH title. I liked Jericho’s title run that Real Life AEW went with, but I think it can start here. He can enter the ROH PPV as a recently crowned anti-Honor champion and get massive heat. The months prior to this is Claudio having a solid run of work rate dream matches narrated by Regal. 

 

 

The Acclaimed vs Rush and Andrade 

Maybe this isn’t doable with drama but I want it and that’s what I’d plan to build towards. Los Ingobernables are corrupt and killers that want the gold. Acclaimed scissor and have fun. A combination of different weeks having the good guys get laid out and the bad guys getting embarrassed is a solid build. 

 

 

Brit Baker vs Jamie Hayter

The split happens when it seemed like it was going to happen before the Saraya pivot. Jamie Hayter is the face, but acts like a tweener. The fans will still cheer her but she keeps the attitude that grants her no alliances. So when Baker is cheating with Reba and Athena as a trash talking heater, Saraya makes a debuting save to even the field. 

 

Fall out from this will be a headlined super hyped Dynamite of Baker and Athena vs an uneasy alliance of Hayter and Saraya. Pre-that match you have respected female veterans in a supercut promo video hyping how important Saraya’s miracle return is and how excited they are for it, while hyping the other wrestlers saying that the AEW women’s division is a big deal. Hayter pins Baker in both the PPV and this match to solidify her.

 

The aftermath of that pivots to Baker vs Saraya in a singles feud, Hayter’s rise towards the championship (either first going through Nyla or Shida or Deeb), and Athena breaking off not hurt from the loss because she wasn’t pinned but she can go after Jade again with the new heel element OR she becomes the ROH Women’s champ.

 

 

Swerve Strickland vs Keith Lee

Too soon? Meh, I don’t think so. Have celebrities in the crowd predict who they think will win throughout the show. This will be the first of a series of matches. Swerve wins this but Keith will win the feud. At the end of the feud so Swerve can keep his heat he’ll lead a faction of cool bullies. Swerve’s House? 

 

 

Best Friends and Orange Cassidy vs The Death Triangle vs 2.0 & Jake Hager vs FTR and Wardlow

The clusterfuck flipfuck to end all summersaults! The Elite surprise return after the match. Gives everyone a ppv check and we see fast paced craziness.

 

 

Bryan Danielson vs Eddie Kingston 

This should have happened again. The whole nearly burning him alive thing. Stealing John’s idea. Winner takes on the ROH Champ at the ROH PPV. Eddie wins so we can get a hot Kingston vs Jericho (again, I know. But in front of a ROH crowd facing a heel Jericho champ) in ROH. Kingston will lose that and go manic for a month. Calmed down by a returning Ruby Soho and friendly Ortiz. Build him back up with his posse to take down MJF.

 

Pivot Danielson either in a tag with a BCC member against FTR or against Samoa Joe for ROH reasons. Eventually, when BCC breaks a part. He is the prick killer he once was. 

 

IF Regal actually is leaving, then the pivot is a quick heel turn to say the BCC got soft and have Danielson injure Mox. Give that man a vacation! Danielson vs Yuta. Maybe even Yuta & Claudio vs Danielson….and Garcia? World is your oyster because that’s literally all the world is.

 

It may be a mistake to have Regal leave strong. But that heat can transition to Danielson.

 

 

THE MEAT CUP:

Willie Hobbs vs Samoa Joe vs Lance Archer vs Miro

If Miro is available still then use him to be the Meat winner. If not, put Brian Cage in here and have Hobbs win.

 

 

Darby Allin, Sting, and Ricky Starks vs Jay Lethal, Sonjay Dutt, and Satnum Singh

My own  biases would have not booked the superior Jarrett match that we got. This gets Darby and Sting on the show. Starks can be a part of a winning team by evening the odds 

 

I want to give Darby wins to be a legitimate challenger to MJF when his program is finished with Hangman.

 

 

Jungle Jack Perry vs Luchasaurus 

Yeah, ya kinda gotta. Steel Cage. Do what they did. I want this to end at this PPV. I’m lost at the developments of when what happened officially with this feud so I’ll be lazy and just say derp.

 

PRESHOW: 

 

Jade Cargill vs Abaddon

Jade vs a monster of the week. The Baddies can be terrified while Jade is more uneasy. Jade always wins until a hopefully eventually healthy Stratlander return in the future. But if the right challenger appears, I guess you jump on it? Time will tell. 

 

Daniel Garcia vs Wheeler Yuta

I’m worried I’ll overbook this match up but my guy tells me to do it again. They should always feud off and on as they both eventually rise up the card. Garcia cheats. We never have the melodrama with Danielson, we can do that later. Keep him a Sports Entertainer. Run this match back at the ROH PPV. Then keep them a part until they meet again for another series of match ups.

 

 

Derp

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On 12/2/2022 at 11:04 PM, Shartnado said:

Yeah, it's definitely a problem, (and where did Scorpio Sky disappear to after losing the TNT title), but Swerve may be closer to that level than most people realise. I mean, if they wanted to do it. Over all, yes, they need to improve this. But who is available that could potentially reach that level soon, that they don't already have on the roster?

I believe 2 Gold Scorpio is injured

@Octopus

MEAT CUP!!!

https://giphy.com/explore/homer-drooling

Edited by zendragon
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On 12/3/2022 at 2:53 PM, zendragon said:

The Obvious answer is Ricky Starks which I'm surprised no one remembered actually has a title shot coming up, Hobbs I see more of a monster of a month that a champ. Guy who works with the guy makes the money (I could see him beating Ricky so Ricky can win it back).

Keith lee is a bit older and with the extra weight I wonder how much tread is left on the tires. (I wouldn't mind seeing him drop some weight just for his own long term health and to extend his career) 

Guys like Dante Martin and Bowens are your young lions who could obviously get there.

And as a Non Black POC I could see board favorite Lard Lad getting to the top of the card in short order

I just want to say after last night I was right both in Ricky being a top guy and Bowens being able to hang in ring with FTR

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@Twiztor to me the obvious answer is Keith Lee. He's a former nxt world champ and that gives him credibility. He's a Casino Battle Royal win away from a legit title win. 

Stroke Daddy Starks is right there, too. Swerve could get there. Hobbs. Lee Moriarty has a real "poor man's Montez Ford" charisma that I think could serve him well down the line...

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