Original Air Date: December 16, 2020
Event Date: December 16, 2020
(aired live on TNT & the FITE app)
Commentary: Excalibur, Jim Ross, Tony Schiavone, Orange Cassidy (3)
Ring Announcer: Justin Roberts
“Dynamite” by No One Hero
“Hangman” Adam Page & Alex Reynolds & John Silver vs Isiah Kassidy & Marq Quen & Matt Hardy
(referee: Rick Knox)
Result: Matt Hardy pins Alex Reynolds after Gin & Juice (from Kassidy & Quen)
Great match. This was one of those matches where the stories came together in the action to create something even better than you might expect. On one side of the ring, Adam Page was a reluctant partner to Silver and Reynolds. Page wasn’t a jerk to them, but he purposefully didn’t tag either of the Dark Order members early in the match. Reynolds made a blind tag to Page partway through the match though, and that led to Page, Reynolds, and Silver working together more and more for some extremely fun sequences. Page was still content to do his own thing, but he had no problem working with Silver and Reynolds whenever the opportunity presented itself.
On the other side of the ring, Matt Hardy was looking to take advantage of the work done by Private Party. That was especially evident at the end of the match when he tagged himself in after Private Party had done all the hard work in the ring. So, this match furthered both teams’ separate stories, but then you add on top of that what seems like a budding rivalry between Hardy and Page (plus a fantastic match in general from Page), and you have a super fun tag match with multiple purposes and payoffs. This whole thing was very well done.
Alex Marvez welcomes the Inner Circle and asks MJF on his thoughts about being honored by the New York Times for Best Performance in “Dinner Debonair.” Jericho attempts to say that he was the person who came up with “Dinner Debonair,” but MJF interrupts him. MJF thanks Jericho for his part in the musical, and Jericho seems annoyed.
Cody and Brandi Rhodes are decorating their home for Christmas when they receive a gift. They sit down together to open it, and inside are a pair of baby shoes. They’re having a baby!
“The American Nightmare” Cody Rhodes w/ Brandi Rhodes, Arn Anderson vs Angelico w/ Jack Evans
(referee: Bryce Remsburg)
Result: Cody Rhodes wins via pinfall after the Cody Cutter
Very good match. Angelico is very fun to watch, and his unique submission style meshed very well with Cody. Cody had to really think about how to attack Angelico, and it took a while before Cody was really able to figure it out. Angelico more or less controlled the early parts of the match with smart holds and takedowns. Angelico was dominant on the mat, but Cody started to pull ahead by getting Angelico to move around the ring more. That movement allowed Cody to use some of his power to stagger Angelico, and Cody took full advantage of Angelico’s vulnerability. Even though Cody came out on top in the end, matches like this make it feel like Angelico could be a top-tier singles wrestler. I’m glad Angelico has been getting more opportunities to show everyone what he can do.
After the match, Team Taz comes out to the stage. Taz congratulates Cody on his match and for his earlier announcement with Brandi. Starks wants to know where the congratulations were for Team Taz when they beat up Cody and Darby Allin last month. There were no congratulations for them, and Taz says that’s how it works in AEW. Taz also says that right now Team Taz is going to enter the ring and put Cody on paternity leave.
The lights go out, and Sting arrives. Powerhouse Hobbs isn’t intimidates, but Team Taz hold him back. Team Taz decides to leave as Sting looks at Cody in the ring and Darby Allin up in the balcony. Without a word, Sting walks away.
Alex Marvez asks Miro about being fined $75,000 for hospitalizing three AEW staff members after costing Orange Cassidy his match against MJF for the Dynamite Diamond ring. Miro is upset that Orange Cassidy doesn’t care about anything when it should be all about ratings, views, and numbers. Also, Miro says there will be a big announcement next week regarding Kip Sabian and Penelope Ford’s wedding.
Eddie Kingston heads to the ring, and he’s here to address his enemies. First, he tells “the big guy up there” that he’s still alive. Second, Kingston says there’s no way Pac is coming back again. Third, he begins to talk about Lance Archer. Archer runs to the ring almost immediately and attack Kingston. Archer is quickly followed by The Butcher and The Blade who attack Archer (and The Bunny walks out behind them).
Archer is overwhelmed, but The Butcher and The Blade back off when Rey Fenix and Penta El Zero M slide into the ring. After a brief face-off, Pac runs into the ring. With Death Triangle united, they and Archer overwhelm Kingston, The Butcher, and The Blade. The Lucha Brothers brawl out to the floor with The Butcher and The Blade. Archer goes to attack Kingston in the ring, but Pac gets in the way and attacks Kingston himself. That leads to Archer and Pac getting into an argument as Kingston escapes.
Dasha Gonzalez welcomes Dustin Rhodes. Dustin talks about taking down the Dark Order one member at a time. Next on his list is Evil Uno.
Best Friends & The Varsity Blondes & Top Flight vs “The Demo God” “Le Champion” Chris Jericho & MJF & Jake Hager & Santana & Ortiz & Sammy Guevara
(referee: Aubrey Edwards)
Result: MJF pins Griff Garrison after an F-10 (from Jake Hager)
Good match. With o many people in the match you might expect this to be somewhat chaotic, and it was for the most part. The action was fun though, and there were some nice moments. Best Friends and Santana & Ortiz showed that they still have a lot of hard feelings towards each other, and rekindling their rivalry caused the first big brawl of the match. Things settled down for a while and there were some nice interactions between most of the wrestlers, but, as expected, the match descended into a free-for-all in the final few minutes. The finish was a way to show that MJF is working his way further into the Inner Circle which was fine. With the big experience gap between these two teams I never really expected the Inner Circle to lose. I just wanted a fun match, and that’s what we got.
Alex Marvez welcomes Thunder Rosa. Rosa addresses Britt Baker, saying that she does belong in AEW despite what Baker has said. Rebel walks up and distracts Rosa as Baker attacks Rosa from behind. Baker takes Rosa down as washes off some of her face paint. Baker then calls Rosa ugly before leaving.
“The Fallen Angel” Christopher Daniels & Frankie Kazarian vs The Acclaimed
(referee: Paul Turner)
Result: Anthony Bowens pins Christopher Daniels after a powerslam (and a shot to Daniels’ head from a boom box by Max Caster)
Good match. With The Acclaimed on the rise, it felt a lot like this match might be a way to get them some momentum, and that’s exactly what it was. SCU looked very good, but they also helped The Acclaimed look very good throughout the match. The finish has some shenanigans, but I think that was one of the better ways to show that The Acclaimed can win, but SCU didn’t lose cleanly to much less experienced team.
After the match, Max Caster call out the Young Bucks who have been watching from ringside. Anthony Bowens challenges the Young Bucks to a tag title match, and the Bucks apparently agree.
Dasha Gonzalez asks Top Flight why they attacked Chris Jericho and MJF after their match earlier tonight. Darius and Dante Martin explain their actions by challenging Jericho and MJF to a tag match next week.
“La Sicaria” Ivelisse & Diamanté vs Big Swole & Serena Deeb (NWA Women’s Champ)
(referee: Rick Knox)
Result: Big Swole submits Diamanté with the Clearwater Cloverleaf
Good match. Ivelisse and Diamanté had a lot of good teamwork throughout the earlier portions of the match, but Deeb and Swole has some very strong individual efforts later in the bout. Deeb did a lot to gain control of the match for her team, and Swole came in to clean up as Deeb ran interference as the match neared its end. On the end I think Ivelisse and Diamanté were better as a team overall, but Swole and Deeb came together stronger when it counted the most.
After the match, Nyla Rose runs out and attacks Big Swole and Serena Deeb with Vickie Guerrero right behind her. Runs out and smashes Nyla Rose with a chair, clearing Rose and Guerrero from the ring.
Outside the Venue
Best Friends address Miro as Orange Cassidy hangs out behind them. Best Friends are very excited about Miro’s announcement next week, and they can’t wait to be there to see it.
A look at Jurassic Express.
FTR and Tully Blanchard are at the commentary table, and they aren’t happy. Why is AEW celebrating Jurassic Express and not FTR? Dax Harwood is pissed off, and he says FTR has Jurassic Express in their crosshairs.
No DQ AEW World Title Eliminator Match
“The Bad Boy” Joey Janela w/ Sonny Kiss vs Kenny Omega (AEW World Champ) w/ Don Callis
(referee: Bryce Remsburg)
Result: Kenny Omega wins via pinfall after the One-Winged Angel
Very good match. This was kind short and pretty violent, and it was also rather obnoxious. Don Callis was on a mic for half the match doing “commentary” at ringside, and Omega joined him with his own commentary for a while as he beat up Janela. Janela pushed back later in the match and put Omega through a table, but Omega dominated almost all of this fight. Omega was strong, dangerous, and arrogant. It was great.
After the match, Don Callis says now that Omega has beaten Janela (whom he was supposed to face in the first round of the Eliminator Tournament), there are no more unanswered questions about Omega’s status as champion. As Callis talks, Death Triangle walks out to the stage. Pac says he and Omega have some unfinished business, but he’s not here to be selfish. Death Triangle is here to address injustice. Rey Fenix never lost in the Eliminator Tournament, so Pac wants to know why Omega deserves to be champ. Callis informs Pac that wrestlers like him don’t tell the world champ what to do. Pac informs Callis that Tony Khan has already sanctioned an AEW World Title match between Omega and Fenix. Omega starts yelling as the show ends.
This was a really good show. The matches were very entertaining overall, and there was a lot of nice story moments. I’m really enjoying Omega’s time as champ so far, and I think its great that they’re revisiting loose ends from the Eliminator Tournament. And really, there wasn’t anything about tonight’s show I didn’t enjoy. Of course some things were better than others, but everything was good. Plus, a as good as tonight’s show was, it did a good job of setting up a lot of stuff to look forward to.
Match of the Night
Adam Page & Dark Order vs Matt Hardy & Private Party
This was a really tough call, but I think I had the strongest reaction to the opening match tonight.