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All Out III - 9/5/2021


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Just now, Casey said:

Apparently they asked for $50k each time it was used back in 07/08 or whatever when Danielson was doing the run in ROH. Someone from ROH tweeted about it in response to that very question.

Damn, Europe must be doing well to ask for such a fee and I can see why AEW went the direction they did. I don't love it, but it's fine.

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18 minutes ago, Craig H said:

I'm guessing Tony wanted it in perpetuity and Europe was like, lolno.

Kahn then went Howard Hughes and bought the entire continent of Europe including all it's IP.

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Danielson’s theme is actually great. WWE callback & ROH callback while sounding entirely new at the same time, very assertive beat over the top. He looked pretty jacked, calm & assured coming out: theme fits that well. Final Countdown would have been lame; if AEW is to profess to be something new, they could hardly debut all these acts as entirely referential to persons crafted in other promotions. Punk kept his previous song; Danielson gets something new, and hopefully his presentation is a fresh riff on previous promotion presentations too.

Edited by A_K
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4 hours ago, Krone Meltzer said:

Also, kudos to Jim Ross on those calls last night. He really sold Suzuki big time and man, his call on Adam Cole and Bryan Danielson... That's why you have him on commentary. For moments like that to live on forever.

Co-signed on this, thought he did really great work that stood out and am glad he was on the call. Loved his reactions and exclamations of "It's Adam Cole Bay Bay!" and "For the love of God it's Bryan Danielson!" Great job selling these moments. 

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With regards to The Final Countdown, I kinda think that maybe Bryan just didn't want it. Maybe because he didn't want to be all nostalgia, maybe because he didn't want to eat up 2.5 minutes with every intro, who knows? I doubt price would've been an issue if he pushed it.

11 minutes ago, A_K said:

hopefully his presentation is a fresh riff on previous promotion presentations too.

I think he's gonna be WWE look with ROH wrestling. In AEW he'll have the freedom to go back to more of a mat-based style which will be better for him and the diversity of presentation for the company.

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13 minutes ago, DreamBroken said:

Co-signed on this, thought he did really great work that stood out and am glad he was on the call. Loved his reactions and exclamations of "It's Adam Cole Bay Bay!" and "For the love of God it's Bryan Danielson!" Great job selling these moments. 

Those, and the opening of Punk/Allin to the effect of ‘have you ever heard a sweeter sound than that opening bell’ was just the right level of melodrama. Credit where it’s due.

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Credit to JR for apparently telling Excalibur at the First Dance that “you got this, kid” and let him handle the biggest return of the last 10 years (if not longer). Excalibur was excellent during that first stretch from the opening to the first commercial break.

I think it was Excalibur last night that dropped the “AEW is the home of professional wrestling” line, wasn’t it? That should be their call tag now, honestly.

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ramblings from a Brit late to the party. apologies if i stole anyones talking points.

 

- Loved Miro vs Eddie. This is the type of hoss fight AEW has been lacking, the sort of thing a guy like Lance Archer promises and doesn't do. Miro's chest looked like beetroot by the end. Tremendous selling and emoting from Eddie the whole way through, though they did the neck stuff well and the ref distraction was executed perfectly. 'You fucked up' chants for the deliberate referee missing the pinfall spot was awesome. Best PPV opener in forever.

- Moxley vs Kojima was hurt by following Miro vs Kingston, which was stylistically very similar and much better. Still a solid match though and Kojima looked like he was having a blast, which made it even more enjoyable. I think Suzuki is massively overrated but still cool to see him turn up, and I did enjoy the first Moxley/Suzuki match so I'm down for it even though I wasn't creaming my pants like New Japan fanboys.

- Baker vs Statlander was perfectly acceptable with a hot finish, but entirely forgettable. I've yet to be impressed by Statlander despite the hype around her. I'm all for more strong women in the ranks but she's still a bit awkward and ultimately very bland. Time to rotate her out and maybe give her a revamp.

- Bucks vs Lucha Bros - this is the type of match everyone is going to throw snowflakes on, but I'll just say it wasn't for me. That said, it was probably the most I've enjoyed this pairing and the finish and celebration was tremendous. Penta showing such emotion and getting his family out almost made me forgive the years of phoning it in. The entrance was some big time shit too.

- Battle Royale started off rocky and suffered from the same problems these Casino Battle Royales always do, but the second half served to highlight the promising young prospects they have (Conti, Cargill, Hirsh) as well as the experienced vets they've accumulated (Soho, Rosa, Hayter). Hell, I enjoyed Nyla Rose's piece in this match too. Soho has big 'solid hand' energy but cool to see her given such a superstar debut. Right call having her win - gives Britt another big scalp while it's hot and then Ruby can cycle down the card to work with the younger talent, and they can come back to Rosa with more build. Speaking of Rosa, I thought she looked awesome, one of the best workers on the whole show.

- Pleasantly surprised by Jericho vs MJF and thought it was actually really good. Great trolljob with the entrance and MJF really impressed me here. We know what a lot of his strengths are, but his selling of the long term damage to the back through the match was pretty great, and of course the finish paid it off perfectly. The re-start was a great bit of sports entertainment schmozz too. I know a lot of people want Jericho to fuck off, but this crowd didn't and they were red hot for it.

- I thought Punk vs Darby delivered and was a great match. The crowd were a bit sedated following singing along with Jericho, but all concerns about Punk were put to bed I think. The slow, more methodical pace worked to their advantage and made everything feel very organic and like two guys thinking about what to do next, rather than a bunch of stuff that was obviously set-up or pre-planned. A couple restholds from Punk, but first match in 7 years so not a big knock and all his offence was executed great. Some big moments without going main event big, and Darby came out looking strong. Big thumbs up.

- Wright vs QT was an acceptable bathroom break match, though nothing here made me think Wright should wrestle more.

- Main event was really good without copying their first match. 20-ish minutes was just right, and still felt like a long, gruelling, hard-fought, physical bout without going overboard or dragging. Just a well worked main event match, well laid out and paced with good twists and turns down the stretch. Table spear was a surprisingly nasty big spot. Good Brothers/Callis stuff was annoying but relatively minimal for Bullet Club horseshit. Another thumbs up.

- I pretty much called the way this would end, just wasn't sure about Cole, but watching it play out was still a blast. Seeing Cole come out and do the instant swerve with his buddies gave me memories of why I stopped watching wrestling a few years ago, but Danielson making the save to end the show made everything right in the world. Cole being a part of the Elite at least gives me some hope he isn't going to be doing a tonne of big long main events, but let's see. Punk and Bryan in this promotion makes it basically impossible for me to hate these guys.

This show felt must-see and delivered. My only criticism would be that yes, it was long. None of the matches over-stayed their welcome, but this was 3+ hours, the crowd were clearly flagging at points, I was flagging at home watching it at my own convenience, and they still have big matches announced for the next 2 TV shows. With the roster getting to the size it is, they should start running more PPVs. Not WWE level, but they can probably go from 4 a year to 6 or 8 and still have them feel major.

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i don't really do star ratings but as i said many pages ago..   from the entrance all the way to the celebration when i was watching Lucha Bros vs. Young Bucks i felt like i was watching something special in real time.  That's the highest praise i can give a match.  

And i completely disagree with anyone who says it was just a spot fest.  there was some layered story telling and old school cage match brutality mixed in there..  

it's one of my favorite matches of the year. 

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Lucha Bros entrance was great aside from that weird train of 5$ mask & robe wearing, limp wristed ‘performers’. Hesitate to call them dancers as it was utterly weird. Like it Undertakers Druids went to a Mexican hip hop party & awkwardly tried to fit in. 

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33 minutes ago, A_K said:

Lucha Bros entrance was great aside from that weird train of 5$ mask & robe wearing, limp wristed ‘performers’. Hesitate to call them dancers as it was utterly weird. Like it Undertakers Druids went to a Mexican hip hop party & awkwardly tried to fit in. 

For about 3 seconds i thought the dancers were Penta and Fenix and i said out loud "i didn't know they could move like that.." 

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So, so many pages of conversation so it's hard to think of anything that hasn't been said.  But I'll add to the pile anyway.

All the talk about it feeling like Christmas was exactly how it was for me.  And to go with that analogy I guess we were all pretty good this year as we got what we wanted.  It's all well and good to control the narrative as much as possible but this proves that they can still be incredibly successful and give the fans what they want.  I try to not go full-on AEW fanboy but with shows like this it's practically impossible to avoid that from happening.

As for how things were here Great friends + great wrestling + some damn good beers = one incredibly great time.  I lost my goddamn mind for Suzuki and the cage match was our MOTN.  The entrance was incredible and had that "Yeah, they're winning it tonight!" vibe which thankfully was proven true.  Man, that ruled.

As for the debuts I'm very happy for Ruby and Cole to show up.  But for some reason no matter how much I see to prove it it just hasn't sunken in that Bryan Danielson is in AEW.  I'm sure it'll happen pretty soon but it was one of those wonderfully surreal moments.  Then again it's still pretty damn surreal that Punk is there and seems so very happy to be there.  What a time it is to be a fan indeed.

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1 minute ago, NikoBaltimore said:

The entrance was incredible and had that "Yeah, they're winning it tonight!" vibe which thankfully was proven true.  Man, that ruled.

The gear and entrance definitely made it seem more plausible but when Fenix broke up the pin after the BTE Trigger, the crowd popped like they really thought the change could happen. Rewatching rn and it is such a fantastic match. Pacing is difficult in those tornado style tag matches in steel confines, hence why a lot of those old school TNA classics started with the silly idea of following tag rules for the first half. These boys nailed it 100%. 

The camera operator in the cage was fucking money. WCW look to it but it circumvented the main problem with these cage matches from an aesthetic point of view in that they can be hard to follow visually. But that one dude did such a fantastic job.

Fenix floating through the air felt like an eternity. Excalibur's voice cracking calling the finish was the cherry on top. Imo a top 3 match in company history along with the Omega/Hangman vs. Bucks tag and Cody vs. Dustin.

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I'm in full agreement of that.  On rewatch Fenix was up in the air for so long that even gravity was in awe for a sec before doing its job.  Credit to them for only having that one big dive instead of tons of "Please don't die" moments (well at least from the top)

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1 minute ago, NikoBaltimore said:

I'm in full agreement of that.  On rewatch Fenix was up in the air for so long that even gravity was in awe for a sec before doing its job.  Credit to them for only having that one big dive instead of tons of "Please don't die" moments (well at least from the top)

Yeah it was more violence based with cool spots than elaborate bullshit involving the cage. Great call on that. 

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I've rewatched Eddie/Miro and Baker/Statlander so far - out of those two, it's really hard to pick a favorite, but it's probably Eddie vs Miro. The suplexes, Miro's heel work, how fiercely the crowd was behind Eddie... I dunno, it was just a real hot opener and probably couldn't have picked a better match to go with to open up this insane show.

Britt Baker is still a little... uh, I dunno, sloppy isn't the right word, but she goes for things so quick and it doesn't happen sometimes so it looks a little wonky (the first attempted curb stomp and some ground transitions) but the back half of the match was pure fire. I don't know who said it, but the idea that they need to stop putting babyfaces against Baker is insane to me. I watched with headphones on both times, and Statlander never got boo'd. Multiple chants for her, pops for near falls. This wasn't a Red Velvet situation, and honestly I think that had more to do with a) being in Pittsburgh obviously and b) people not really liking or caring (or both?) about Red Velvet.

I'm watching Punk/Darby right now, and I've already spoke on it previously. It's better, to me, on the second rewatch. Punk really doesn't seem to have lost much of a step in-ring past the first handful of minutes of the match.

Lucha Bros/Young Bucks is my final rewatch of the night (maybe add in the debuts of Cole and Danielson, for the 5th time since last night). I have the top rope Canadian Destroyer in my head on a loop. Not that it matters in the grand scheme of things, but I think we're probably looking at 5+ stars from Da God Meltzer on that one.

Out of these four matches, I'd probably go...

  1. Punk/Darby
  2. Lucha Bros/Young Bucks
  3. Kingston/Miro
  4. Statlander/Baker
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What’s next for MJF? Since he really hasn’t really wrestled more than 50 matches in the company, TK has a lot of options for that act, and not just with all the arriving talent. We haven’t seen him work a program with Darby, Orange Cassidy, Kenny Omega, PAC etc…

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Aimlessness. He doesn’t fit at the top of the card, he lost when it counted to a bloated broken down Jericho. Baron Corbin ennui type gimmick perhaps. Pinnacle was a completely fluffed concept at best of times and the latter part of this feud cheapened it further. 

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