Sunday, December 22, 2019

Brandon's 2019 Wrestling Year in Review

In 2019, I attended four live wrestling events. At first, I was a little disappointed that the number was so low, but after spending some time thinking about all that I saw, I’m actually quite satisfied. I managed to attend promotions that I’ve never seen before and experienced a nice variety of wrestling. So, join me in a look back at my 2019 Wrestling Year in Review.

The first event I attended was a NXT house show in Durham, NC at the Durham Armory on January 6th. I had no idea that NXT was coming into my backyard until I ran across a post on r/SquaredCircle from a guy who was looking to sell a front row seat at the last minute. I quickly messaged him and made arrangements and off I went to the best overall “wrestling” show I saw all year.

Top Three Favorite Matches of the Night:
1. Keith Lee vs Dominik Dijakovic
2. Aleister Black & The Velveteen Dream vs Johnny Gargano & Tommaso Ciampa
3. Matt Riddle vs Adam Cole

My Personal Favorite Moment of the Night:
Seeing Ricochet in action

The second event I attended was the NWA Crockett Cup in Concord, NC at the Cabarrus Arena & Events Center on April 27th. I never imagined that I would ever attend an NWA event, let alone a Crockett Cup. And if that wasn’t surprising enough, walking into the arena and seeing it decked out like a 1980’s NWA event was enough to take my breath away.

The event was co-promoted by the NWA and Ring of Honor, and featured tag teams from CMLL and NJPW. The actual wrestling was fantastic and the crowd was very hot for the entire show, sadly, the NWA still has some growing pains to work out in regards to fan interaction.

I met Nick Aldis, my only wrestling meet and greet of the year, and it was quite the disappointment. He was extremely uninterested in interacting with the fans and was definitely not worth the $40 I spent to take a picture with him.

This was the first wrestling event my fiancé Brandy had ever attended and it was a great first show. It wasn’t overproduced like the WWE events, but it wasn’t super low budget either. The Crockett Cup was a nice mid-tier event that gave her a great night of wrestling and planted the seed for the fan that she’s become.

Top Three Favorite Matches of the Night:
1. Nick Aldis vs Marty Scrull
2. Villian Enterprises (PCO and Brody King) vs The Briscoe Brothers
3. Bandido and Flip Gordon vs. Guerrero Maya Jr. and Stuka Jr.

My Favorite Moment of the Night:
The World Title Championship Match

The third event I attended was a NXT event at Full Sail University in Orlando, Florida on October 23rd. After enjoying the NXT house show earlier in the year so much, I really had high hopes for this live event. Sadly, it was quite the disappointment.

Attending NXT at Full Sail shows you exactly how much of a TV show that the WWE produces vs. a wrestling show. Everything is controlled, manipulated, and micro managed. The crowd wasn’t nearly as hot as it seems on TV, and the matches were not memorable at all. The only real shining moment was Finn Balor’s heel turn, but even that ended the show on a sour note.

Top Match of the Night: (Only one match was worth listing)
1. Keith Lee vs. Dominik Dijakovic vs. Roderick Strong

My Favorite Moment of the Night:
Keith Lee vs. Dominik Dijakovic vs. Roderick Strong Match

My fourth and final wrestling event of the year was AEW Dynamite at the Bojangles Coliseum in Charlotte, NC on November 6th. This was a fantastic night of wrestling and my favorite wrestling show that I’ve ever attended for a few reasons.

This was the go-home show for Full Gear and AEW brought out the big guns to really sell the pay per view. Cody cut one the greatest promos ever and Omega/Page vs. Jericho/Guevara got out of control and all hell broke loose. It was wonderful and everything I love about wrestling.

What I really think made this event so special is that AEW really brought me back to watching weekly wrestling. It the first time since the late 90’s that I feel like wrestling is must see TV. To make things even better, my fiancée, who I introduced to wrestling at the Crockett Cup, has watched AEW with me every week since its debut and she’s “All In.” So, to attend a live TV event, in the middle of actively watching wrestling and enjoying the heck out of it was truly a great experience and one I didn’t think I’d ever experience again. It was made even better by having someone I love by my side who was enjoying every moment as much as I was.

Top Three Favorite Matches of the Night:
1. Hangman/Omega vs. Jericho/ Guevara
2. Trent vs. Pac
3. Jamie Hayter/Emi Sakura vs. Riho/Shanna

My Favorite Moment of the Night:
Cody’s promo

Overall, 2019 was a great year of wrestling for me. I attended some great shows, got to see a nice variety of wrestling, and was there at the beginning of AEW. I can’t wait to see what 2020 brings!

Saturday, December 14, 2019

WWE Over The Limit 2012 Recap (5/20/2012)

Over the Limit 2012 is the only WWE pay per view I’ve attended outside of WrestleMania 27. I remember getting the leaflet for the show when I attended Smackdown in December 2011, and I was super excited for it. Raleigh has only hosted three WWE pay per views and despite being in the heart of Flair country the city never hosted a big WCW pay per view or event. After only bringing in 8,000 fans for Over the Limit 2012, the WWE has not returned with a PPV and I have a feeling they won't anytime soon.

In 2012, I wasn't watching WWE on a weekly basis, but I kept up with the storylines via results each week. As the card slowly started forming into shape, I realized that this wasn't going to be a wonderful pay per view. Then again, a year earlier I had gone to possibly the worse WrestleMania of all-time, so I knew I couldn't be that disappointed in what was in store. At least this time I didn't have to drive eight hours to be disappointed.

One match really stood out on the card: Daniel Bryan vs. CM Punk for the WWE Heavyweight Title. Both contestants said they would do things never before seen in the ring, and promised an old fashioned wrestling match minus all the gimmicks. This was nice because the main event was John Cena vs. John Laurinaitis. Don’t get me wrong, Johnny Ace can wrestle, but by this time, he was older and was featured as an annoying authority figure that no one wanted to see in the ring.

I remember the card wasn’t fully announced before the pay per view and like a lot of the non-major pay per views it featured a lot of throwaway matches. One of the most notable things about this pay per view is the fact that there was no fireworks, pryo, or any real explosion to start off the show. The show just began. Some fireworks were featured after the first match.

I was excited for the Battle Royal that opened the show, but a bit disappointed with the contestants. It reminded me of the Battle Royals at Wrestlemania, where they scrape the bottom to get people onto the show. The only notable entrant was the returning Christian and guess who won the royal for a shot at either the US or Intercontential Championship? That’s right, Christian.

The Raleigh crowd was actually pretty hot that night and stayed connected through a run of the mill tag team match between Kofi Kingston/R-Truth and Ziggler/Swagger. There was the typical bathroom break Divas match between Layla and Beth Phoenix, before finally getting to the World Title Match which was a four way between Randy Orton, Chris Jericho, Sheamus, and Alberto Del Rio. It was a very formulaic match, but a decent match nonetheless.

Following the World Title match we were forced to sit through The Miz vs. Brodus Clay. Need I say more?

Christian ended up facing Cody Rhodes for the IC Title. The two worked well together and I remember digging the match, but it was very short and Cody lost the belt. Christian got a huge pop for it, but I really wish they would have skipped the Miz vs. Clay match and give these guys more time to put something together.

Now, it was time for the big match: CM Punk vs. Daniel Bryan. The match lived up to the hype. The two put on a wrestling clinic and everyone in the crowd was thrilled with it. The WWE gave them plenty time and it was a great match. I remember the ending being a little screwy, but I wasn’t disappointed in that. It was just nice to see some good honest wrestling on a big stage.

The main event was well… not worthy of being a main event. It was more of a comedy skit that the Big Show interfered in. I think the only noteworthy thing that came out of this match was the WWE used footage of one guy in the crowd and the look of utter shock on his face when Cena lost. The WWE replayed this fan and his reaction for weeks on TV and they prior this match they didn't really search the crowds and their reactions. Nowadays this is pretty common, they find that one mega fan in the crowd, zoom in, and then use his/her exaggerated expressions to convey the sort of reaction they were hoping for (and usually don’t get). A lot like the main event at Wrestlemania XVII, the main event here spoiled the excitement for the show and left the fans unhappy. It was a bummer, but I can hardly remember it occurring. The Bryan/Punk match overshadowed it despite going on first.
It was a decent show and I’m glad that I get to say I saw Daniel Bryan and CM Punk in their prime go head-to-head. To be honest, that match was worth the price of admission alone. It’s always fun going out and watching wrestling and this night was no different.

Here are the results of the entire card:
Pre-Show: Kane defeated Zack Ryder (6:52)

Christian won a 20 Man "People Power" Battle Royal where the winner gets his choice of a United States or Intercontinental Championship match later in the show. (13:12)

The other participants were: David Otunga, Tyson Kidd, Alex Riley, Jimmy Uso, Jey Uso, William Regal, The Great Khali, Heath Slater, Titus O'Neil, Darren Young, Ezekiel Jackson, Jinder Mahal, Tyler Reks, Drew McIntyre, Curt Hawkins, Michael McGillicutty, JTG and Yoshi Tatsu.

Kofi Kingston & R-Truth (c) defeated Dolph Ziggler & Jack Swagger to retain the WWE Tag Team Championship (12:12)

Layla (c) defeated Beth Phoenix to retain the WWE Divas Championship (7:08)

Sheamus (c) defeated Alberto Del Rio, Chris Jericho & Randy Orton in Fatal 4-Way Match to retain the World Heavyweight Championship (15:52)

Brodus Clay (w/ Cameron and Naomi) defeated The Miz (4:08)

Christian defeated Cody Rhodes (c) to win the WWE Intercontinental Championship (7:18)

CM Punk (c) defeated Daniel Bryan to retain the WWE Championship (24:04)

Ryback defeated Camacho (1:48)

John Laurinaitis defeated John Cena (17:04)
If John Cena wins, John Laurinaitis will be terminated. Any superstar who interferes will be terminated.

Sunday, December 8, 2019

Visiting Jerry Lawler's Memphis BBQ Company

This past Thanksgiving, I made a trip to Memphis, Tennessee to visit some family and friends. It was my first time back in Memphis in fourteen years and I had one place at the top of my “to see” list. No, it wasn’t Graceland, but Jerry Lawler’s Memphis BBQ Company. Having opened in January 2017, Jerry Lawler’s BBQ has managed to stay afloat in a city where barbecue restaurants can be found on every corner. A friend of mine sent me a bottle of sauce that the restaurant uses and I really enjoyed it, so I was excited to try out their food for myself.

The restaurant in located in Cordova, TN and is attached at the end of a strip mall. It’s a small building that is decorated with newspaper clippings, posters, and photos from Lawler’s career.

The folding chairs have Mid-South Coliseum painted across the back, in one corner plays a TV of Jerry Lawler’s greatest moments, and the entire menu is wrestling themed with sandwiches called slammwiches for example. It truly is a wrestling themed experience and I love that I got to experience it.

As for the service and food… well, that could have gone better. I don’t eat beef or pork, so I settled with the diced chicken breast and my fiancée went with the grilled chicken sandwich. Neither of us were very happy with our selections. The food was bland, not very hot, and mine was extremely tough. It was arguably the worse piece of chicken I’ve eaten in my entire life.

The french fries were great, the mac n cheese tasty, and I particularly liked an appetizer we got which consisted of sweet potato waffle fries, coated in powder sugar, and dipped in maple syrup. It was like having some weird fair food, and I enjoyed every bite of it. Unfortunately, I was the only one.

As for the sauces, I enjoyed the original sauce the most (I’m typically a sweet fan, but the original is sweet enough) and I purchased a bottle of the original rub and took home a sampler of the pecan rub.

I was a little bummed that no wrestling memorabilia was to be found at Jerry Lawler’s BBQ. I was hoping for a chair from the Mid-South Coliseum, a shirt, or an old program encased in a glass. Instead, it feels like a generic BBQ spot that just has a Jerry Lawler branding over the top of it, with very little effort actually going into making the restaurant unique. Don’t get me wrong, a wrestling themed restaurant is rare, but there was room to make this so much more and no one has taken steps to do so.

I don’t see myself revisiting Jerry Lawler’s Memphis BBQ Company in the future, because there are dozens upon dozens of better BBQ spots in Memphis, but I’m glad to say I’ve been there and done that. From here on out, I’ll just put some of the sauce on the properly cooked chicken I have at home.

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Limitless Wrestling: Twilight Zone Live Report 11/29/2019

Black Friday, November 29th Limitless Wrestling returned to Yarmouth, Maine for their first ever live streaming show on IWTV with Twilight Zone!!

It was a great night a wrestling and a fantastic end of the year for Limitless Wrestling.  The live stream had a couple hiccups through out the night and dropped once but I for the most post there is a lot of positive talk on Twitter about the show.

Independent Wrestling TV Champion: Warhorse vs. John Silver

Decent opening match, this was Warhorses 15th title defense and I like the fact that they made a point the announce that.  It gives importance to the championship and proves he a fighting champion.  Good back and forth match, there was a split crowd with Silver being a Limitless regular.  Warhorse retained his title with a double foot stomp.

Christian Casanova vs. Myron Reed

Nova continued his winning ways proving he belongs in the title picture.  Reed looked good tonight, a little off at times. I'd like to see him back in Limitless.  Reed hit went for a very impressive 450 splash, but Casanova got the knees up and rolled him up for the small package pin.

James Drake vs. "The Prize" Alec Price

This was supposed to be Drake vs. Dan Maff, but he couldn't attend because of a death in the family.  The surprise opponent was Alec Price.  Boy oh boy did the Prize shine bright tonight!  I have to give Randy a lot of credit for putting Prize in the match, it was the right choice. 

This was a fantastic match, lots of hard hitting action, very fast paced at times, and the big man James Drake nailed a moonsault for the pin.  If last months pre-show got is foot in the door, tonight's performance should guarantee Price a permanent roster spot.

Masha Slamovich vs. Jody Threat

This was tough for me as I'm a fan of both of the ladies.  I've seen Masha in singles action with Let's Wrestle, but this match was their singles debut in Limitless.  I really enjoyed this match, lots of hard hitting, a bunch of suplexs from both ladies and in the end the Russian Dynamite needed to put her feet on the ropes for leverage to hold Threat down for the three count.  I hope to see them both back in Limitless.  

Take Me Home Tonight: Limitless Wrestling World Champion: "Retro" Anthony Greene & Ace Romero vs. Maine State Posse: Danger Kid & Aiden Aggro

Yup.  This was as awesome as I expected it to be!  Just go to IWTV, sign up for the 20 free trial using the code Limitless and watch this match.  You won't regret it.  Action was inside and outside the ring, lots of back and forth action.  No one team had the upper hand for any extended period of time.  Ace pinned Danger Kid with a package piledriver.

Post match got on the mic, put over MSP and then challenged AG to a title match in January.  Casanova came to the ring, said he deserved a title shot.  AG accepted both of their challenges for a triple threat match on January 24th.

Scramble Match: CJ Cruz vs. Kevin Ku vs. One Called Manders vs. Oswald Projects vs. Pinkie Sanchez

This match felt like something was off to me.  I don't think we got to see very much from Oswald other than he can take a beating eat a shit ton of chops.  What little we did see from Oswald looked good.
I want Manders back for a one on one match with Matthew Justice or Dan Maff or Jake Something.   CJ Cruz got the surprise win with his missile drop kick on Kevin Ku.  I think I need to go back and watch this on IWTV.  

JT Dunn vs. Jake Somthing

This match was awesome!  They were different in the fact that stayed in the ring with a stiff and snug match.  Jake Something was over huge and the people hate JT Dunn.  I really dug this match a lot and I really hope we get more of Jake Something next year.  Dunn got the pin with death by elbow.

Last Creature Standing: Kris Statlander vs. Ashley Vox

This did not disappoint.  We got brutality, we got broken furniture, we got the ring boards exposed, and both ladies busted open.  Ashley Vox won, that's all I'm going to say, go watch it, you will not regret it.

Limitless Wrestling returns on January 24, 2020 in Yarmouth, Maine with Brian Pilman Jr., Danhausen and a triple threat match for the Limitless Wrestling World Championship as AG defends against Ace Romero and Christian Casanova.

Thanks for reading, please leave a comment, read my other posts, and like my blogs Facebook page and while you're at it check out my weekly podcast The Wrestling Insomniac on the Nerdy Legion Podcast Network.

Until next time!

Sunday, November 17, 2019

Signed Trading Cards: Joyce Grable, Crowbar, Bill Watts, & Lars Anderson

These are cards are some recent through the mail success.

Joyce Grable
This card I mailed to Mrs. Grable September 12, 2019 and got it back on October 1, 2019.  It is from the 1982 Wrestling All Stars series B card set. 

Crowbar aka Devon Storm
I mailed these cards to Crowbar on September 28, 2019 and got them back on October 5, 2019.  The first card is from the WCW Nitro Trading Card Game released in 2000, the second from the 2019 GCW Joey Janela Spring Break 3 Part 2 card set.  The final card was released in 2019 by 4 Corners Cards.

"Cowboy" Bill Watts

This card is from the 1982 Wrestling All Stars set.  I mailed it to Mr. Watts on October 19th and got it back on November 4th for a very fast turn around!

Lars Anderson

This "card" is from 1973 Victory Sports magazine, it's standard trading card size with brief bio info on the back, but is not numbered.  The thickness of it is a standard paper magazine page.  This is oldest signed trading card that I have in my collection.  Also this gives me three of the four Anderson's signed in my collection.  I'll never get Gene and Brad and Bryant do not have trading cards.  I mailed this on October 26th and got it back on November 4th.

Thanks for reading, please leave a comment, read my other posts, and like my blogs Facebook page and while you're at it check out my weekly podcast The Wrestling Insomniac on the Nerdy Legion Podcast Network.

Until next time!

Saturday, November 9, 2019

AEW Dynamite Live Report (11/6/2019)

This past Wednesday, I made the two and half hour trek from Raleigh to Charlotte, North Carolina to attend AEW Dynamite at the Bojangles Coliseum. This was my first time attending an AEW show and my second time seeing a wrestling show at the Bojangles Coliseum (The first being TNA Genesis in 2009). The Bojangles Coliseum, was formerly known as the Charlotte Coliseum/Independence Arena, and hosted numerous NWA/WCW events including Starrcade 1993 and Slamboree 1997.

My girlfriend, Brandy, accompanied me on my trip to Dynamite and we arrived around 5:45 PM with the doors scheduled to open at 6:30 PM. There was already a line wrapped around the building for fans waiting to get in. We paid our eight dollars and hopped in line. I was surprised by how organized the Bojangles Coliseum staff was as they started breaking up this massive line and creating new lines at other entrances of the arena. I’ve never been to an event that’s done that before and it really made getting into the building much easier than trying to funnel this one massive line into one door.

I had read online that the merch stand got busy, so as soon as we made it through security we hopped in line. T-shirts were priced at $30, the hoodie was $60, hats were $30, a flag was $20, patches and pin were $10, and a sticker was $5. I’d say that all the prices were very reasonable, when you take into consideration the shipping costs (and time) when ordering from I’ve had my eye on the AEW hoodie since it was released earlier this year, and the grey AEW shirt, so I picked up both. Brandy decided on the Riho baseball tee and we left quite satisfied with our purchases. 

If there is any complaint to be made about the merch stand it’s the selection. Obviously, they can’t bring all the goodies from ProWrestlingTees to each arena, but the selection was quite limited as you can see from this picture. What you see up here is all that was for sale. On the far left you can see the outline of something black, that was one of those cheap bags that sold for $15. 

Once we had changed into our new AEW garb, we made grabbed some Bojangles from the concession stand and made it to our seats. I didn’t buy our tickets the day they went on sale, so I had to settle for tickets a little higher than I prefer. Our view from section 122 wasn’t bad at all though, and the crowd was actually very cool around us. Everyone in attendance seemed to be all for AEW and that made for a great environment. 

Justin Roberts came out first, accompanied by this amazing graphic of The Golden Girls all over him. 

I can’t say enough good things about Justin, he was fantastic the entire night. He kept the crowd entertained between commercials and ring set ups, and gave everyone enough information to keep us anticipating what was coming next, without spoiling anything. He introduced Golden Boy and Excalibur, to announce the first AEW Dark Match, which consisted of Hikaru Shida vs. Big Swoll. Then he announced Arn Anderson as a guest commentator and the place went nuts. It was arguably one of the biggest pops of the night and I’d say the stands weren’t even full yet. 

After seeing Shida last week on Dynamite against Shanna, I became a fan. This match wasn’t nearly as good, but it was still a very entertaining women’s match, something AEW has been struggling with. I won’t spoil the results since it hasn’t aired yet, but it was a decent match definitely worth watching.
Following the match, Justin Roberts announced Tony Shiavone and Jim Ross, who came out to a big ovation. It warmed my heart to see a sign that said “Welcome Home Tony” and if I had any complaint its that Tony deserves his own graphic card not just JR. 

During some of the downtime waiting for the show to start, the cameras focused on various fans signs and Justin Roberts made little quips about them. My favorite was when it stopped on a sign for Marty Scrull. It mentioned how the last Elite member needed to come home and the crowd cheered. I couldn’t agree more, and really hope Marty shows up sometime after his contract is up.

The show started off with a bang with PAC taking on Trent. I wasn’t expecting Trent to put up such a fight and it was a great match that got the crowd fired up. Orange Cassidy was great to see in person, and I’m not sure how much it made it on TV, but his slow motion actions had everyone in the arena cracking up. He does small things like, hit the mat to cheer on Trent in slow motion and it was great to see such dedication to the character.

This may have been my favorite match of the night, with PAC getting the win. It would have killed any momentum he has going into the pay per view had he lost, but I think Trent only made him look better and it really made me take notice of Trent’s single skills.

Cody arrived to a massive pop. If you are a wrestling fan, I’m sure you’ve seen this promo by now, but if for some reason you missed it, I’ll post it below. This is one of those promos that is going to go down in history. The arena was so loud, I completely missed the “undesirable to God damn undeniable” line. It amazes me how Cody has turned into such a white hot babyface. I’ll be honest, I didn’t see this in him. I liked Cody, but wow, you can see his father’s influence the older he gets and this promo just screamed a “modern day Dusty” to me. I just can’t say enough great things about being in the arena to experience this moment live. 

When I first read the card for this event The Dark Order vs. Private Party leaped off the page to me. I haven’t been overly impressed with The Dark Order, but Private Party has exceeded my expectations in every match. Well, this match had the opposite effect on me. I finally saw some bright spots in The Dark Order but felt like Private Party didn’t really do enough to keep me invested. The highlight of the match was Private Party finally making the hot tag and it being shut down immediately by the The Dark Order. It’s so incredibly rare to see that, I actually heard an fellow audience member turn to another and go, “Can they do that? I’ve never seen that done before.”

The match was entertaining, but it didn’t live up to the expectations I had in my head.
Then the Chris Jericho parody video aired and well… if it hadn’t been for Cody’s amazing promo this may have stolen the show. If you haven’t seen it, it’s worth the watch for sure.

A women’s tag match was up next with Riho and Shanna facing off against Emi Sakura and Jamie Hayter and this was definitely one of my favorite women matches thus far in AEW. I like all of the contestants and Hayter really impressed me a few weeks ago when she faced off against Britt Baker.  

These four ladies are who the women’s division really needs to be built around in my opinion and they did a fantastic job with everyone getting a moments in the spotlight. Sakura and Hayter got the win, which I think was needed to show that Riho is not invincible and could possibly lose this Saturday at Full Gear.

Then came Brandy’s video package, which was met with the same confusion as the last one. This may be the one thing that AEW is doing that I could care totally less about. I don’t want to see Brandy as a heel and these strange overly evil vignettes make no sense, when her husband is the top babyface of the company. They really need to scrap this and retool.

Brandon Cutler got squashed by Shawn Spears w/ Tully Blanchard. I expected a bigger pop for Tully, but I think his association with the heel Shawn Spears might have taken away some of the usual cheers. This was a squash match that made me happy once Joey Janella ran out for the save. It’s nice to see storylines in AEW Dark carrying over into Dynamite. Plus Joey has done nothing but impress since making his AEW debut and I would love to see him in a hot feud. I think Spears and he may work well together.

We were given plenty of time to get in our main event which saw Kenny Omega and Hangman Adam Page vs. Chris Jericho and Sammy Guevara. 

The match was solid, with no one going too crazy. Sammy took one hell of a beating and his poor chest looked terrible after Kenny got done with him. Hager coming out and getting involved was a nice touch. Ultimately, this match was leading up to the massive brawl that ended the show and well… I can only describe it as amazing. 

Moxley coming through the crowd, Omega with the barbwire broom, MJF throwing Jericho into the ring, Nick flying off the top of the entrance circle onto The Inner Circle… I could just go on and on. It was a fantastic brawl and a great way to the end the show.

Following the chaos, Justin Roberts came out to remind us that they still had two more AEW Dark Matches to go, with one scheduled to air this Friday on AEW’s YouTube Channel. I’d say around 25% of the crowd left anyway, and the rest of us were treated to one terrible match and one decent match. 

The first match was Leva Bates and Nyla Rose vs. Shalandra Royla and Shazza McKenzie. I’m going to ruin this match, because I’ll be doing you a favor. Leva never gets tagged in and Nyla just destroys her opponents. It goes on way too long and at one point Shazza broke up a pin and someone in our section let out a massive, “WHY!?” It was hilarious, because we were all thinking the same thing. Honestly, I see where Nyla has a spot in the women’s division, but the rest of these ladies are maybe better kept off TV for the time being. It was frustrating seeing two good women’s matches and then this disappointment.

The final AEW Dark Match was a six man tag match featuring SCU and Cima vs. Kip Sabian and The Hybrid 2. With SCU having a huge PPV match in a few short days, they didn’t get much offense in, so CIMA carried the match for them. It was an okay match, but I’d argue it was quite skippable.

Following the match, SCU did some promo work and Kazarian threw out some free t-shirts. Eventually the Bucks and Cody made their way to the ring to make some jokes, throw out some shirts, and even plucked a child from the crowd whose birthday was that day to have a match for the “Charlotte Championship.” Brandon Cutler was recording, so they told him to lay down and take the pin because his recorded sucked anyway. After he lost, they proclaimed he was now zero and twenty. 

It was a great way to end the night and the crowd had a lot of fun. It was one of the better crowds I’ve been around and overall the entire night was a blast. AEW puts on a great TV product and it’s equally great live. 

My only real issue with their production is their sound, which sometimes seems to have issues on TV as well. The music is extremely low in the arena. My girlfriend even mentioned how the NWA seemed to do better with their sounds at the Crockett Cup and I agree. The pyro was amazing, but you just never got that pulse thumping feeling when a wrestler came out because someone had the volume set on six and not eleven. 

I will definitely attend more AEW events in the future and recommend it to any wrestling fans if they come nearby. It’s a great wrestling event and the best show I’ve been to all year.