Why is it the “Grand Slam”? Episode? I don’t know. I never asked and they never told me. It’s not the anniversary, that’s still a few weeks ago.
I did some googling, Arthur Ashe was a tennis player. This episode is in the Arthur Ashe stadium. I feel they should have said something if they wanted to do a tribute for him.
Things kicked off with the “American Dragon” Bryan Danielson taking on the AEW Champion, Kenny Omega. It’s a non title belt, but I’m expecting a hell of a show regardless.
They didn’t disappoint, Omega did a great job of breaking Danielson in. I mean, damn. His chest was so red and purple. Omega took his fair share of bumps as well. It was a hard hitting and incredibly technical contest. Very well executed match up.
It really “ramped up” when Omega used the entire entrance ramp to get a run up for a V-Trigger. He got all of it! The intensity only continued to rise from there. The pace picked up and the power followed.
Somehow they managed to keep the fast paced up for the remainder of the bout. I thought we approached (and exceeded) the time limit, but apparently not. It still took a few false finishes before we finally got the real one. A time limit draw! It was just 30 minutes, not 20.
The referee had a bit of trouble separating the two of them, but eventually The Elite came out to seperate them. Obviously, they kicked the crud out of Danielson afterwards. CC and Jurassic Express came to his rescue.
With an excellent opener in the bag, we slow things down a bit with our mandatory, weekly CM Punk fan fest. The crowd ate it up again, but it doesn’t make for great television.
Actually, I take that back. “It’s been a long time since professional wrestling has been in New York City”. I’m fairly certain that the WWE were just there last week. What a sick burn. It’s all worth it now.
Then it got back to being boring. More drama between Punk and Team Taz. More lovey dovey stuff between Punk and the fans. Just the usual drill. Except it felt about 400 times longer than normal. I had enough time to zone in and out multiple times.
Just to “actually” myself again, he did raise one more valid point. “I’m glad I’m not wrestling on Dynamite tonight, because how are you supposed to follow that?” Punk asked, in reference to the Danielson/Omega clash.
It’s a good question to ask, because once again, AEW opened with the main event. It makes no sense.
Over to the next match, the red hot feud between MJF and Brian Pillman Jr. It was a solid match, but failed to live up the opening bout. It would have been a better match if it was ahead of the main event. It’s hard to fault MJF and Pillman Jr. for this, but it is unfortunately a problem they had to deal with. MJF won via submission.
Alex is backstage with Jericho and Hager. They just wanted to talk some smack about Lambert and the Men of the Year.
Back to the ring for our next match, with Evel Knievel (Cody Rhodes, he was wearing an American cape) vs Malakai Black. Cody had Arn in his corner, and Brandi. Malakai was alone, because he isn’t a little bitch boy. I’m kidding, I love Cody.
Apparently I’m the only one who loves Cody, because everyone in NY was cheering for Malakai. It was weird. I thought Cody was the golden child of AEW. It wasn’t just that they were cheering for Malakai, they were actively booing Cody. I never thought I’d see the day.
At one point, Cody signalled to Arn to move around the corner. He very slowly and awkwardly shuffled from one corner to the next. Before he made it though, he slipped off the ring and fell onto the floor. It wasn’t a bit. He then climbed back up, only to have Cody bump into him and knock him to the floor. That was a bit. It was horribly forced, due to Arn falling off just moments before. I don’t understand why he was so awkward.
Cody went to check on Arn, Arn yelled at him to get back in the ring. Cody and Malakai continued to fight. At one point, Cody hit the referee which provided a temporary distraction for Malakai to spit in Cody’s face. Malakai picked up the win after that. It feels like Cody is about to turn heel. Even though this week he said that he’d retire first. I think he is trying to throw us off the scent.
Sammy is mad at Miro for beating up Fuego. Next week, he will fight Miro in a TNT title match. God’s favourite champion vs the Spanish God. If Guevara wins, he will buy Fuego a new car. It must be nice to have a disposable income.
Time for a little tag team action, FTR vs the team of Sting and Darby Allin. Both Sting and Allin had blood tears painted on their faces. I must admit, it looked pretty cool on Sting. It would have looked even cooler if he wasn’t balding and dressed like he was heading for a quick gym session at the local YMCA. He looked like that weird old man who goes to a yoga class and makes all the 20 year old women uncomfortable.
Anyway, back to the match. It wasn’t bad, it wasn’t good. Just average. FTR tried to bend the rules a lot. Eventually it backfired when they were on the wrong end of the chair shot. Sting won this won for his team via submission.
Over to the ladies! Our Champion (and Dentist) Dr. Britt Baker D.M.D. is defending her title against Ruby Soho. I was honestly a bit disappointed with this one. It wasn’t bad, I was just expecting more. I really don’t like Ruby Soho.
The last few minutes picked up in intensity and entertainment. For a split second, I was actually worried that Britt would lose the belt. Fortunately, Hayter and Rebel did what the boss pays them to do. Keep the title around the waist of Dr. Britt Baker. Phew!
This was a pretty good episode, and honestly felt like it was almost PPV quality. Considering it is on free to air TV (at least in the states), that’s awesome. The show could have been even better if the card was put in a decent order. I feel like AEW are doing a great job, but keeping screwing up the little things.
They need some help in writing and some help in programming. How much better would this show have been if we opened with the Tag Match, moved on to MJF/Pillman, then Malakai/Rhodes, then the Women’s title match, before finally moving on to the most anticipated matchup on Omega v Danielson. You don’t open with the most anticipated match! It’s booking 101.
Also, Dark and Dark Elevation suck. So does (most of) Rampage. And the commentary team. Moving on.
I’ll see you guys for Rampage! Remember it is a 2 hour special, because it is keeping the Grand Slam theme going. It actually looks like a decent card for the first time since the debut episode. Talk then!