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Clearly there's an AEW rep on the board since Justin's introduction for Frankie was "You guessed it.  Frankie Kazarian!"  It's such a random reference that somebody HAD to have seen @Nice Guy Eddiepost that a time or two, right?  I mean sure it's possible that was his random tribute to Norm but it's more fun to think my theory is correct.

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Yeah, Adam Cole is the best wrestler in AEW.  That match with Kaun was so fucking good for free YouTube internet.

EDIT:  Maybe Daniel Garcia is the best in AEW.  Anthony Greene rules.

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Dark 1/18/22

Cole vs Kaun: There's probably nothing in wrestling I hate more right now than the opening of Adam Cole's matches. The fans sing along to the song. They do the boom. Then he teases the shirt. They go nuts for it. He kicks it away denying them all. Do they boo? No. The match starts. Cole locks up. He disengages. He shouts Adam Cole Bay-Bay. They all chant along. What a bunch of pathetic losers. In the end, though, it's Cole's fault. He's the one conducting the music. If he realizes that the reactions are broken, he needs to change something. This isn't some sort of meta-thing where he's trying specifically to get under my skin. It's just him being a cool heel and the crowd eating it up. But it's gross that they get such a kick out of him abusing them and then go right back for more and I don't even want to watch his matches after that. Anyway Kaun looked ok but not necessarily better than Bison in the next match, so whatever.

Gunn Club vs Bison XL/Larintiz X: Bison and Larintiz make a good big man/little man team. They should use them more. Larintiz had some good escapes and Bison cleaned house well. It feels good to see the Gunns get temporary comeuppance and here Austin's leg clip worked great as a cut off, which is how it should be used.

Hirsch vs Perez: Hirsch was charming on the Unrestricted podcast talking about the things she loved when she was adopted to America as a kid: "And another thing about America? Birthday parties." It feels too early for that corner pull out Saito Suplex to be scouted, but maybe I just wanted to see it. I do kind of like that she can finish a match just by running across the ring and kneeing someone in the skull. Perez has a unique look (and a great standout promo picture) and can bring some intensity. I kind of wanted to see Perez do a few more throws but it's not like the match needed it. I'm just greedy. Also, maybe a bit more heeling, but her issues lately come off as "excessive swagger" and she had that here, so it's subtle.

Archer vs Cross: Archer was still high energy but he looked tired to me, maybe? My favorite thing here was how he just bodyslammed the guy across the ring. The repeated headsmashes after the finisher was good too. This was kind of a low end Archer squash though.

Blonds vs Gray/Alanis: Julia with the subdued waving and clapping is better than them really hammering everyone over the head with it. Alanis is a tall, lanky guy but he took the Blonds stuff well at the end. Griff's promo was ok. Pillman's was, at least, short. It is not going to go well for them tonight.

Velvet vs Vipress: Vipress is such an American Gladiators ripoff heel name, but she sure had a lot of stuff. And Velvet is best taking stuff and using her athleticism to dodge and work from underneath. So this worked out pretty well. Unlike Elevation last night, you could run a pretty good indy just on the enhancement talent we've seen so far alone.

Skye Blue vs Robyn Renegade: Again, the Renegades would be a good pick up along those lines. I loved Robyn getting in a "You suck" shouting match with the crowd. Charlotte imposed herself well on the outside. I do see a niche with Skye doing some tricked out and elaborate chain wrestling to start in her matches if she can further develop those skills. She seems to be leaning in that direction which makes her more than just the plucky underdog in a world where Cora Jade exists. Her finish is just flinging someone onto their face awkwardly though. I kind of wish she'd just use the flying body press instead.

Anna Jay vs Nieves: Weakest of the women's matches on the show so far. Little things like Anna shuffling into position and how her roll before a kick doesn't work as well as Hirsch's roll away to get momentum. That doesn't mean she's not improving in every match in other ways, like in her confidence as she walked away after a shot. Nieves had some nice elbows in the corner but didn't get to do all that much else. Just Anna getting her reps in as is good and necessary.

Garcia vs Greene: Greene is one of my least favorite Garcia opponents on the indies, not necessarily because what they do is bad (it isn't), but because Garcia has to dumb down his matwork a bit and that's usually why I'd seek him out on the indies. In this sort of studio setting, however, it was perfect. Garcia's cutoff strikes are so good and so intense. Greene just sails around the ring looking very natural and his big spots all worked here with their unique entries. The flapjack is great and his gutwrench power bomb off the ropes was really interesting. I would have bought Garcia winning off of the armbreaker cradle he did but to actually win a match with a killer modified abdominal stretch in 2022 is just top notch and it'll be such a cool thing for Garcia to get over.

Bear Country vs Zubaz Bros: Good showing for Bullock and Ryan. They took all of the Bears' stuff. They were funny. I wouldn't mind seeing them against Best Friends or Reynolds/Silver. This was a little like a boss fight where the radius of attack was so high that if you even got close to Bear Country, you got crushed.

Best Friends vs Wingmen: 10/10 for what they were trying to do. Avalon and Drake were both equally good in taking Yuta's stuff, albeit in different ways. All of the Cassidy comedy hit for me. Yuta's reactions for Cassidy tagging out almost immediately once he got in and for Nesmeth randomly being in the ring worked. Everyone was totally on all the time and that's what you want in a match like this, even if it means watching Avalon be creepy on top of Yuta in the ropes. He got his comeuppance, at least.

Good show. I don't think shining up the Blonds, Skye, etc. honestly helps draw more eyes to Dynamite or anything but it makes for a more complete, fleshed out overall package for anyone watching it already.

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The problem with Skye Blue using a cross body or a press is that no one really protects that spot anymore.  Otherwise yeah, Skye wrestling a Steamboat match where her matwork wears down her opponent for the mercy kill flying body attack would be perfect for a plucky babyface like Skye. 

I would suggest that her flying finisher be something crazy and signature like a Skytwister Press (THE SKYE-TWISTER~!!!), Phoenix Splash, or the Spiral Tap, but she rarely leave her feet to be so tiny so I am not sure how accomplished of a high flyer she is.   Maybe staying grounded is for the best.

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Just now, J.T. said:

The problem with Skye Blue using a cross body or a press is that no one really protects that spot anymore.  Otherwise yeah, Skye wrestling a Steamboat match where her matwork wears down her opponent for the mercy kill flying body attack would be perfect for a plucky babyface like Skye. 

I would suggest that her flying finisher be something crazy and signature like a Skytwister Press (THE SKYE-TWISTER~!!!), Phoenix Splash, or the Spiral Tap, but she rarely leave her feet to be so tiny so I am not sure how accomplished of a high flyer she is.   Maybe staying grounded is for the best.

My friend, Garcia just beat a name guy with an Abdominal Stretch. Moves can be reclaimed!

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1 hour ago, Matt D said:

My friend, Garcia just beat a name guy with an Abdominal Stretch. Moves can be reclaimed!

That shit was 100% MMA neck crank with a leg grapevined for leverage.  We applauded immensely.  Daniel Garcia is a machine.

The more I think about it, the more I am certain that the element that is missing from Skye Blue's babyface arsenal is a pop inducing high spot for the finish.  If Nyla's big ass can hit sentons, then certainly teeny Skye Blue can do a Shooting Star or something.

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The Ass Boys are getting so good.  Curious to know more about Larinitiz X.  And Bison XL.  

16 hours ago, DEAN said:

Yeah, Adam Cole is the best wrestler in AEW.  That match with Kaun was so fucking good for free YouTube internet.

You've been championing this Kaun character for good reason.  This guy's gonna have a run.  And Cole is a magnificent bastard.  

2 hours ago, Matt D said:

Dark 1/18/22

Cole vs Kaun: There's probably nothing in wrestling I hate more right now than the opening of Adam Cole's matches. The fans sing along to the song. They do the boom. Then he teases the shirt. They go nuts for it. He kicks it away denying them all. Do they boo? No. The match starts. Cole locks up. He disengages. He shouts Adam Cole Bay-Bay. They all chant along. What a bunch of pathetic losers. In the end, though, it's Cole's fault. He's the one conducting the music. If he realizes that the reactions are broken, he needs to change something. This isn't some sort of meta-thing where he's trying specifically to get under my skin. It's just him being a cool heel and the crowd eating it up. But it's gross that they get such a kick out of him abusing them and then go right back for more and I don't even want to watch his matches after that. Anyway Kaun looked ok but not necessarily better than Bison in the next match, so whatever.

I completely understand the anti-cool-heel stance and you're not wrong in presenting the facts of the matter.  I should be tired of this entrance, but Adam Cole's asshole-ry is so special, so hilarious (satirical brilliance) and so perfectly executed.  Cole being cheered is both a celebration of his tone perfect character and perhaps a little bit part and parcel with modern society ills.  

 

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10 minutes ago, HarryArchieGus said:

The Ass Boys are getting so good.  Curious to know more about Larinitiz X.  And Bison XL.  

You've been championing this Kaun character for good reason.  This guy's gonna have a run.  And Cole is a magnificent bastard.  

I completely understand the anti-cool-heel stance and you're not wrong in presenting the facts of the matter.  I should be tired of this entrance, but Adam Cole's asshole-ry is so special, so hilarious (satirical brilliance) and so perfectly executed.  Cole being cheered is both a celebration of his tone perfect character and perhaps a little bit part and parcel with modern society ills.  

 

He wrestled that whole match as a face, he IS a face.  He was an undersized underdog who used technical skill to beat a larger, rougher heel who was manhandling him.  Adam Cole is Ricky Steamboat.

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I want to like Daniel Garcia as much as the rest of you, but there is something missing with him that I can't really put my finger on.  He's 23 years old so he has all the time in the world to improve, but I think that is kind of the issue I have with him.  He seems like a high school bully trying to pull his high school tactics with adults and it makes me wonder why these dudes don't just kick this little whippersnapper's ass.  His character is hard for me to take seriously.  He's kind of a technician, kind of a bully, but also comes off as a whiny bitch when he talks.  He needs to pick one and work on perfecting that character.  The match with Anthony Greene was pretty fun, (that rebound Doctor bomb was dope) and I like that abdominal stretch neck crank, but he's kind of all over the place with his character work right now.  If I was in charge, I'd push him as the submission machine who can win with any of the submissions in his arsenal, but who would put me in charge of anything? 

I don't get the Wingmen.  I don't see any situation where the members of this group would ever hang out.  JD Drake needs to be teaming with another chubby southern dude (I may be crazy, but I think that dude should be billed as an Anderson cousin and teaming with Brock).  Peter Avalon and Anthony Greene need to be a loverboy tag team with a smoking hot valet.  Cezar Bononi just doesn't fit at all.

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When I first saw Garcia, before I started diving into the indies work which changed my mind a little, my big takeaway was that he married the intensity and the technical skill and the logic and the research with an "I was born in 1998 and you will never understand my put upon grief” heel preciousness which I can appreciate having an almost 20 year old in the house.

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1 hour ago, Matt D said:

When I first saw Garcia, before I started diving into the indies work which changed my mind a little, my big takeaway was that he married the intensity and the technical skill and the logic and the research with an "I was born in 1998 and you will never understand my put upon grief” heel preciousness which I can appreciate having an almost 20 year old in the house.

Yup, he and HOOK are really the zoomer boys that are here to stay and I love it. As a high school teacher, I see these kids every day lol. They've really nailed it both of them.

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8 hours ago, Matt D said:

Just Anna getting her reps in as is good and necessary.

Funny you mention this. I was at the tapings and Tony Khan came out for the "have fun" promo before the show. He introduced Eddie Kingston, saying he was banged up and couldn't wrestle(later found out fractured orbital bone?) but wanted to attend and say hi anyways. Kingston comes out and does his normal "thank you for coming" bit but made it a point to say how important these matches/tapings were for the talent so they could get the additional reps in in front of cameras and a live audience. 

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On 1/18/2022 at 12:48 PM, NikoBaltimore said:

Clearly there's an AEW rep on the board since Justin's introduction for Frankie was "You guessed it.  Frankie Kazarian!"  It's such a random reference that somebody HAD to have seen @Nice Guy Eddiepost that a time or two, right?  I mean sure it's possible that was his random tribute to Norm but it's more fun to think my theory is correct.

It's definitely a Norm MacDonald reference, they started doing it right around his death.

 

Kaun had a really good match, was fairly impressed with him. I've seen Bison XL before, he's got a good look and wouldn't mind seeing him again. Kross without the upright hair is just weird and wrong. LOVED Peter Avalon's new BeeGees look. And we found out that Tazz is apparently a bowling champion!

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4 hours ago, supremebve said:

I don't get the Wingmen.  I don't see any situation where the members of this group would ever hang out.  JD Drake needs to be teaming with another chubby southern dude (I may be crazy, but I think that dude should be billed as an Anderson cousin and teaming with Brock).  Peter Avalon and Anthony Greene need to be a loverboy tag team with a smoking hot valet.  Cezar Bononi just doesn't fit at all.

I think that's kinda the point of them. They're four oddball guys who never fit in anywhere else and kinda gravitated towards eachother, and somehow found they got along and kind of found their own niche. I guess it's because I often found myself in friend groups with other guys who didn't really have another clique to join so just kind of hung out together by default. I do like the idea of Drake and Arn Jr. in some throwback southern brawler team as well as Avalon and Greene as The Heavenly Bodies 2.0.

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On 1/12/2022 at 12:43 PM, The Natural said:

Glad #FTR vs. Lucha Brothers is done with but...

Oh, man, I had a friend who never stopped bleating about the fucking Secret. Got right on my tits.

I have never heard this phrase before but it is AMAZING and I plan on using it multiple times a day

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On 1/12/2022 at 12:43 PM, The Natural said:

Glad #FTR vs. Lucha Brothers is done with but...

Oh, man, I had a friend who never stopped bleating about the fucking Secret. Got right on my tits.

I have never heard this phrase before but it is AMAZING and I plan on using it multiple times a day

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1 hour ago, The Green Meanie said:

It's definitely a Norm MacDonald reference, they started doing it right around his death.

 

Kaun had a really good match, was fairly impressed with him. I've seen Bison XL before, he's got a good look and wouldn't mind seeing him again. Kross without the upright hair is just weird and wrong. LOVED Peter Avalon's new BeeGees look. And we found out that Tazz is apparently a bowling champion!

When I first saw Marcus Kross without the upright hair on Elevation, I thought he liked what would happen if a Mulkey brother stole Ricky Morton's clothes.

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2 hours ago, The Green Meanie said:

It's definitely a Norm MacDonald reference, they started doing it right around his death.

Yeah, I know that's why but was mostly joking.  Though considering everything you never know sometimes.

As for Avalon's hair he should have cut it a long time ago.  He somehow looks even sleazier than before and from the little I saw has gotten a bit better.  Hope he's down for another quality feud at least on Dark.

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2 hours ago, HumanChessgame said:

I think that's kinda the point of them. They're four oddball guys who never fit in anywhere else and kinda gravitated towards eachother, and somehow found they got along and kind of found their own niche. I guess it's because I often found myself in friend groups with other guys who didn't really have another clique to join so just kind of hung out together by default. I do like the idea of Drake and Arn Jr. in some throwback southern brawler team as well as Avalon and Greene as The Heavenly Bodies 2.0.

I went to a tiny college in a redneck town and let me tell you how real that is. All the goths, punks, hippies, theater kids, and general misfits all hung out in the smoking alcove of the cafeteria and partied together.

I also always assumed the Wingmen was a reference to the main guy (Sabian? I actually don’t know) was a PUA who was bringing on all these Wingmen as his trainees.

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