AEW Fyter Fest
June 29, 2019
by Scrooge McSuck
- Presented LIVE on Bleacher Report Live from Daytona Beach, FL. Jim Ross, Excalibur, and GOLDENBOY are calling all the action for the main show. Looks to be a few thousand in attendance, which isn't bad for an obvious B-lineup at a gaming convention with little hype.
Buy-In Match #1: The Best Friends vs. SCU vs. Private Party:
SCU is represented by Scorpio Sky and Frankie Kazarian here. Private Party is Isiah Kassidy and Marq Quen. They were lost in the shuffle during the Battle Royal at Double or Nothing, so maybe they can shine a little here. The Best Friends (Chuck Taylor, a.k.a. Chuckie T and Trent Beretta) and SCU were victorious in their efforts at Double or Nothing, so both teams look to continue to build their momentum. Beretta and Kassidy start. Lockup and Beretta grabs a side headlock. Whip to the ropes and Beretta with a shoulder tackle. Taylor in with more of the same. Kazarian tags himself in and goes up against Quen. Kazarian with a boot and lariat after a few counters. Scorpio Sky with a back breaker. Beretta back in. Lockup and Beretta with a waist-lock. Whip to the ropes and Kazarian sneaks in with a leg lariat. Sky with a dropkick to send Taylor out of the ring. He hits Beretta in the corner with an elbow and Kazarian follows with a whiplash dropkick. Quen tags himself in and hits Kazarian and Beretta with a springboard body press, followed by a pair of Pele kicks. Private Party with a combo inverted atomic drop and enzuigiri, followed by a leg sweep and double stomp to Kazarian. Quen with a Tornado DDT to Taylor and Kassidy hits the rest of the field with a tope suicida. The Best Friends and SCU swarm Quen and Kassidy. Best Friends with a double suplex to Kassidy on the arena floor. Meanwhile, Scorpio Sky tosses Quen out and assists Kazarian in drilling him with a Tornado DDT. Back inside, double elbow to Kassidy.
SCU interrupts the Best Friend Hug™ but get cleared out with clotheslines and we get the Hug on the second try. Rocket Launch into the Ace Crusher on Kassidy for two. Taylor with a snap suplex for two. Beretta with a Northern Lights into a Fisherman Suplex for two. Taylor with a dropkick for two. Kassidy manages to fend off the Best Friends but Quen is incapacitated on the floor, so he tags in Kazarian just to refresh. Kazarian with dropkicks to the Best Friends, followed by a slingshot Ace Crusher to Kassidy. Beretta with a swinging DDT on Sky. He dives into the corner with an elbow, but Kazarian blocks the DDT. Quen with a step-up enzuigiri from the apron, followed by a Shooting Star Press for two. Taylor avoids a double-team from Private Party. Spike piledriver and Shining Wizard on Quen but SCU saves. Kazarian with a Back Stabber and assisted face-buster for two. Quen lands on his feet to avoid a super-German Suplex and hits a Pele Kick. He head-scissors Kazarian off the top into an ace Crusher from Kassidy for two, broken up by Sky. Taylor launches Quen over the top onto Sky. Beretta tags himself in away from the action. Taylor and Beretta with knee strikes and Strong Zero finishes at 15:59. Post-match, The Dark Order (formerly the Super Smash Brothers) promise they aren't done with the Best Friends, but no-show a second attack after their flock of followers surrounds the ring. The light killing gimmick needs to die, please. Really good, especially for a pre-show match. ***1/2
Buy-In Match #2: Allie vs. "The Librarian" Leva Bates (w/ Peter Avalon):
Believe it or not, this is the first one-on-one women's match in AEW History (Double or Nothing featured a 4-Way and Trio's Tag). Both women appeared on that show in non-wrestling roles (Bates in a backstage segment and Allie on commentary saying "oh gosh" a lot). WWE and NXT fans might remember Bates cup of coffee as "Blue Pants." The "ssshhhhh" thing is already played out after 30-seconds. Avalon takes out a mannequin to get heat and they cut a promo on the crowd for not being able to ready anything other than Manga and comic books. Allie is booked for a match with Brandi Rhodes at "Fyte For the Fallen", so the result shouldn't be in doubt. Bates avoids a lockup and shushes Allie. Twice. Allie pulls back on the finger and takes her over with a snap mare before stomping on the hand. NOT THE PAGE TURNING FINGER! Meanwhile, Brandi is watching backstage, from an angle like a normal person. Back inside, Bates with a boot and forearms. Allie comes out of the corner with a Thesz Press and follows with a Russian leg sweep for two. Avalon casually trips Allie, allowing Bates to surprise her with a dropkick. Back inside, Bates with a Fisherman Suplex. Northern Lights Suplex for two. Allie with a surprise roll-up for two. Bates blocks a hip toss and rolls through into a double-arm hook. Allie teases a comeback but is hit with a shotgun dropkick. Bates with slingshot double knees to the chest for two. Allie ducks under a clothesline and connects with a hangman's neck breaker. Allie with forearms and chops. She charges into the corner with a pair of elbows and a sliding forearm to the chest for two. Bates traps Allie in the ropes and hits a Back Stabber. PEDIGREE (not called that) only gets two. Avalon accidentally tosses his book to Allie. She tosses it for Bates to catch and hits the Super-Kick for three at 8:54. Work was fine, but the Librarian gimmick is already death. Probably the quietest I've seen from crowds in the few AEW shows produced thus far. **
- I'm not even wasting my time recapping the match between Michael Nakazawa and Alex Jebailey (the organizer of the CEO gaming convention). I'll just say it was awful, but there was one comedy spot that made me laugh (Nakazawa slipping in a puddle of baby oil and performing a senton). It was negative stars level, for those needing a ballpark estimate.
Christopher Daniels vs. Cima:
20-Minute Time Limit. These two were in opposite corners of a trio's match from Double or Nothing, representing SCU and #Stronghearts respectively. Cima is scheduled to face Kenny Omega at "Fyte For the Fallen" on July 13th, so that should telegraph things. They slap hands out of respect before locking up. Daniels goes for the left arm but Cima rolls through into a waist-lock. Whip to the ropes and Cima with a shoulder tackle. Crisscross and Daniels with a deep arm drag into the arm bar. They do another crisscross, ending with Cima knocking Daniels through the ropes with a dropkick. Cima follows with a wrecking ball style baseball slide. Back inside, Cima with a slingshot senton. He traps the arm of Daniels and rolls him into a modified octopus stretch, but Daniels manages to get a toe on the ropes to force a break. Daniels reverses a whip and catches Cima with a tilt-o-whirl back breaker. They fight to the floor, with Daniels tossing Cima overhead with a release northern lights suplex. Back inside, Daniels plants Cima with a pair of slams. He drives the elbow across the back of the neck and comes off the ropes with a leg-sweep clothesline for two. Hard whip to the corner and delayed suplex. Daniels springs off the ropes with a moonsault and locks on the Cross-Face, but this time it's Cima using the ropes to break a hold. Daniels tackle carries Cima into the corner and drives a series of shoulders to the midsection. Cima gets the boot up to counter a charge, traps Daniels in the ropes, and hits a Back Stabber, landing awkwardly on his tailbone at the same time. Cima slams Daniels off the middle rope for two. Daniels blocks a suplex, sends Cima to the ropes and catches him with a Blue Thunder Bomb. Boot to the midsection and the Angels Wings gets a near-fall. Cima counters a uranage and follows with an enzuigiri. Jim Ross just used the term "Oriental wrestler" in 2019. Cima with a sunset Liger-Bomb and modified Michinoku Driver for two. Cima with White Noise and a flying Meteora for three at 9:42. Post-match, Daniels gives Cima his respect. Perfectly good opener. Didn't over-deliver, but gets the show starting on a strong foot. ***1/2
Riho vs. Yuka Sakazaki vs. Nyla Rose:
20 Minute Time Limit. I'm not going to lie, I'm not a fan of over-doing it with these multi-people matches on every card. Rose is roughly double the size of Riho and Sakazaki, so she'll get to play the monster. After being overshadowed at "Double or Nothing" but Awesome Kong, Rose could use a strong performance here. Rose isn't too friendly with the handshake, taking a cheap shot at Riho. Riho and Sakazaki try a double whip but Rose sends them into each other. They take Rose off her feet and come off the ropes with a duel basement dropkick. Rose blocks a double-team Boston crab, plants both with slams, and comes off the ropes with a splash. Both bridge out of a cover and put the boots to Rose. Double suplex is blocked and countered by the larger Rose. She continues to target Riho and Yuka simultaneously, trapping them both in a Camel Clutch. Rose press slams Sakazaki onto Riho. In a nice touch, referee Aubrey Edwards went down to count a fall before Sakazaki rolled off. Sakazaki with a running head-scissors, sending Rose out of the ring, and follows with a plancha onto Rose and Riho. She rolls Riho back into the ring and comes off the top with a missile dropkick for two. Riho and Sakazaki trade forearms until Riho comes off the ropes with a spinning head-scissors. Both women miss dropkicks but Riho recovers first to hit a double stomp. Rose comes in and shrugs off a jumping knee strike. Riho with a drop toe hold into the ropes, followed by a 6-1-9. Sakazaki with a flying seated senton and Riho with the coup de grace. Riho and Sakazaki blow a roll-up spot badly. Sakazaki avoids a charge attack and hits Riho with a sliding clothesline for two. Rose no-sells Sakazaki's strikes and showboats. Rose catches the sliding clothesline and plants Yuka with a uranage for two. Rose with a delayed suplex, sending Yuka out of the ring. Rose crushes Riho in the corner and drops her across the top rope. Rose climbs up and hits a flying knee across the back but chooses not to cover. That should've been the match right there. Rose goes up again but Sakazaki hooks the ankle. Rose fights her down, but the delay buys Riho time to roll away from a flying senton. Rose catches Riho diving off the top, then the same with Sakazaki while still holding onto Riho! Yuka rolls through with a sunset flip, with Riho on top as well, but only for two. Yuka with a snap suplex on Riho, but a splash meets knees. Rose with a release German Suplex on Sakazaki, followed by a Liger-Bomb. Riho with a running double knees to Rose and a basement dropkick to Sakazaki to break two pin attempts. Rose with a Death Valley Driver on Riho for two. Riho counters a Powerbomb with a rolling leg-hook cradle for three at 13:02. Post-match, Rose attempts a beatdown. Sakazaki saves, but Riho is unappreciative. Better showing tonight for Rose. You know, sometimes the monster heel should win, too. Good match. ***1/4
"Hangman" Adam Page vs. Jungle Boy (w/ Luchasaurus) vs. Jimmy Havoc vs. Maxwell Jacob Friedman:
20 Minute Time Limit. Kip Sabian joins commentary and will face the winner of this match at "Fyte For the Fallen." This was booked thanks to an incident at "Double or Nothing" where MJF interrupted the reveal for the AEW Heavyweight Championship. MJF cuts a pre-match promo on the gaming convention crowd that tapped into the M-rating at times. Havoc/Page and MJF/Jungle Boy immediately pair up. Page and Jungle Boy find themselves alone and a crisscross with Page knocking Jungle Boy down with a running boot. Jungle Boy springs off the ropes and takes Page over with an arm drag. Havoc back in, unloading on Jungle Boy in the corner with a forearm, elbow, and basement dropkick. MJF sneaks in with a crucifix cradle on Havoc for two. Page sets up MJF for the Dead Eye, but MJF uses the ropes to escape. Page with a fallaway slam on Jungle Boy and slingshot plancha to MJF. Havoc surprises Page with a senton from the apron. MJF cuts off Jungle Boy's tease for a dive, teases his own, then makes a rude gesture to the crowd. Jungle Boy sends MJF to the floor with a dropkick and hits an awkward cannonball moonsault. More awkward because he caught the turnbuckle and landed on his head. Back inside, Jungle Boy unloads on MJF with chops. MJF with a chop to the throat to cut him off. Jungle Boy avoids mounted rights and hits a sunset bomb for two. Havoc interrupts Jungle Boy's climb and we get our obligatory Tower of Doom spot that wipes MJF out in the process.
Page goes from corner to corner with clotheslines on Jungle Boy and Havoc. MJF with a surprise cradle for two. Jungle Boy and Havoc repay Page with a double boot. Jungle Boy counters Havoc's Acid Rain Maker with a reverse-rana. Page with a pop-up Powerbomb on Jungle Boy, but MJF breaks the cover. MJF with a double stomp across the back of the head of Havoc. Page and MJF go face-to-face and trade right hands. MJF clips the knee of the previously injured left leg of Page and teases a Sharpshooter. Page counters and turns MJF over with the Sharpshooter himself, but MJF makes it to the ropes to force a break. Jim Ross calls attention to how much Page has his knee taped up. MJF with the Heat-Seeker but Jungle Boy makes the save. Havoc with an overhead slam of Jungle Boy onto Luchasaurus. He counters the Heat-Seeker and hits MJF with a coup de grace for two. Page takes out Havoc with a handspring lariat and finishes with the Dead Eye at 10:53. Havoc was just a body here, but the other three have some potential, though Jungle Boy needs more seasoning. Non-stop action, and never seemed too chaotic. ***1/2
Cody (w/ Brandi Rhodes) vs. Darby Allin:
20 Minute Time Limit. Allin apparently has a dark history that has warped his mind, including surviving a car accident at 5 -years old that killed his drunk-driving Uncle. Allin comes to ringside with a body bag with "Cody 1-1" on it. I guess Allin is taking wins and losses seriously, symbolically promising to give Cody his first AEW loss. Cody is scheduled to team with brother Dustin against the Young Bucks at "Fyte For the Fallen", and nobody expects Allin to walk away victorious. Lockup to the corner and Allin grabs the arm but Cody escapes, picking the leg from a bent-over position. Allin uses his speed to keep a safe distance. Cody picks the leg and they end up in the ropes. Cody with a side headlock takeover. They fight for a hip toss until Allin uses the ropes for the momentum counter. Cody bails out and studies the body bag resting in the corner. Back inside, Allin suckers Cody with a handshake and rolls him up for two. Cody slaps Allin across the face and hits the drop-down uppercut. Whip to the corner for an awkward bump out of the ring. Cody showboats, doing push-ups as he waits for Allin to get back into the ring. Cody with a release suplex for two. Cody with a fireman's carry shock drop for two. He stomps at the leg joints of Allin and applies the Figure-Four, but Allin rolls to the ropes. Cody throws Allin into the turnbuckles, sending Allin to the outside, again.
Allin grabs the arm of Cody and wraps it around the post. Cody quickly recovers, taking Allin through the ropes with a face-buster for two. Cody sells the wrist from the post-spot. He lays Allin out with a lariat for another two-count. Cody traps the arms and takes Allin over with another release suplex. Cody with a delayed suplex. Allin pulls at the injured hand to escape and rolls Cody up for two. Corkscrew body press for two. Allin goes for the left arm, striking it any way he can with his body as he applies a wristlock. Allin with a torpedo-style headbutt through the ropes. Cody avoids the steps and slams Allin's spine across them instead. Cody pops in to break the counter and flies out through the ropes with a tope suicida. Back inside and Allin surprises Cody with a Yoshi tonic for two. Cody with a super-reverse suplex from the top rope. He makes the slow crawl into a cover for two. Allin bites the left hand but gets clotheslined over the top rope. Allin climbs the ropes for a trust fall plancha (the Coffin Drop), but Cody moves, and Allin CRASHES ONTO THE RING APRON. Stupid, stupid, stupid spot that looked brutal and probably felt worse. Back inside, Allin slaps Cody and gets laid out with a bicycle kick. Cody stuffs Allin into the body bag and hits a Disaster Kick for two. Rolling cradle for only a one-count. Cody lashes Allin with the weightlifting belt. Allin counters Cross Rhodes with a knee and hits a weak Stunner. Cody grabs him for Cross Rhodes and makes the slow crawl cover, but time expires at 20:06 as the hand was about to slap down a third time, and its our first Time Limit Draw in AEW. They were almost perfectly timed, at least. Post-match, Shawn Spears (formerly Tye Dillinger) comes out, chair in hand, AND SMASHES IT OVER CODY'S HEAD, UNPROTECTED. He has a nasty gash on the back of his head as several wrestlers, including MJF of all people, check on his wellbeing. Good, but unspectacular. I do like the story of Allin hanging in there and leaves the door open for a rematch and if Cody may have pulled his punches or not. I did NOT care for the unprotected chair shot, and don't buy the excuse online that it was a gimmicked chair. ***
Kenny Omega & The Young Bucks vs. The Lucha Brothers & The Laredo Kid:
30-Minute Time Limit. This was originally scheduled to be the Lucha Brothers (Pentagon Jr. and Fenix) teaming with PAC, but creative differences have kept PAC off AEW cards for the time being. The Bucks and Omega come out in Street Fighter inspired gear (Matt as Ryu, Nick as Ken, and Omega as Akuma). Unfortunately, Goldenboy can't pronounce "Ryu" properly, so the cool points are stricken from the record. Matt instructs ring announcer Justin Roberts to say, "Round 1, FIGHT." Nick and Laredo Kid start. They trade wristlocks and arm drags. Both miss a dropkick and nip up to a neutral position. Laredo avoids a monkey flip and slaps Nick across the back of the head. Whip to the corner, Laredo Kick with a jumping kick from the apron and springboard body press. They miss Super-Kicks and hit each other with a double clothesline. Laredo with a shove and Nick spits in his face. All six men get in the ring for a face-off. Shoving leads to pie-facing. The Elite block Super-Kicks and unload with right hands. Team AAA hit the Super-Kicks on the second try and hit a synchronized sequence of topes and an Asai moonsault. Back inside, Pentagon with a sling blade on Omega. Matt Jackson gets triple teamed, including a Double Super-Kick and reverse rana. CERO MIEDO! Nick tries his hands at a 1-on-3. Fenix with a hook kick and Laredo with a Michinoku Driver. Laredo Kid with a pair of moonsaults for two. He dives into the corner with a forearm. Nick blocks a suplex and fights off all three opponents. Matt with a series of Northern Lights Suplexes, ending with a double suplex to Penta and Fenix.
Omega finally tags in officially and clears the ring of the Lucha Brothers. He unloads on Laredo with chops, sends him across the ring, and charges in with a diving back elbow. Omega with a back breaker for two. He lifts Laredo into a fireman's carry. Laredo escapes, hits a boot to the midsection, and takes Omega down with a neck breaker. Omega counters a flying body press with a dropkick. Penta interrupts a dive attempt and flashes the cero miedo in his face after a bit of theatrics. They trade strikes until Omega clips the leg and hits a face buster. Laredo finds himself in a 1-on-3 now. Young Bucks with a combo wheelbarrow and diamond cutter. Omega with a fireman's carry roll and moonsault, followed by an elbow and senton from the Bucks. Laredo with a hurricanrana, knocking Nick into Matt. Omega avoids the enzuigiri. Laredo lands on his feet on a release German and hits the enzuigiri on the second try. Penta cleans house and hits Omega with a back stabber. Fenix slides out and springs off the ropes to take Omega down with a hurricanrana. Laredo with a tope suicida on Nick. Penta with a flying double stomp on Matt for two. Penta works over the back of Matt and sets up for the arm-breaker. Matt escapes and hits a Canadian Destroyer, followed by a spear. Omega with a snap dragon suplex to both Fenix and Penta. V-Trigger to Laredo Kid, followed by a 3rd snap dragon. Penta interrupts Omega climbing the ropes and launches Fenix over the turnbuckle to hit Nick on the outside with a senton. Laredo with a Spanish Fly on Omega for two. SUPER KICK PARTY. Triple Super-Kicks from the AAA team, and The Elite fire back with HADOUKENS. Triple Liger-Bombs for two. Nick hits Laredo and Fenix draped across the ropes with a 450 splash. Penta avoids a moonsault and hits Nick with a sling blade. Matt with a wrecking ball dropkick. Laredo dropkicks him as he skins the cat. Omega surprises Laredo with a V-Trigger. Fenix surprises Omega with a diamond cutter, then Nick hits Fenix with a hangman's neck breaker. The Bucks set up Penta for a Meltzer Driver on the floor, but everyone of the Bucks and Lucha Brothers are wiped out after a Spanish Fly. Meanwhile, Omega with the V-Trigger and Tiger Driver '98 on Laredo for two. Running knee strike and One-Winged Angel finishes at 20:29. Great action, though I preferred the 2-on-2 between the Bucks and Lucha Brothers more at Double or Nothing. ****
Non-Sanctioned Lights Out Match: Jon Moxley vs. Joey Janela:
Old school trope here, as they kill the lights momentarily to signal the end of all sanctioned matches. No time limit, no rules, basically. The referee is only here to count the falls or call for the surrender. If you're going to feed someone to Moxley, might as well be the whore of modern hardcore. They go face-to-face and Janela with a pie-face. Mox with a boot and chops. Janela sends him to the floor and hits a tope suicida. Moxley tosses Janela over the guard rail and pounds on him with right hands. Back to ringside, Janela sends Moxley into the post. He pulls a table out from under the ring and sets it up on the arena floor. He uses a PROSTHETIC LEG as a weapon, handed t him by a fan. You don't get points for that, Joey. What do you think this is, the Dupp Cup? Mox brings a chair into the ring and slams Janela onto it. Mox has a small cut above his right eye. Janela fights back with rights but slams himself into a chair missing a flying senton. Mox (I accidentally typed Ambrose here, for the record) with ground and pound. He pulls a barbwire wrapped chair, complete with blood stained rags, from under the ring. He stomps the hand of Janela and plants him with a slam. He lays the barbwire across Joey and stomps it down across the chest. The crowd chants "you sick f*ck" and Mox bows. He climbs up but Janela interrupts with a forearm. Janela with a Franken-Steiner, sending Moxley crashing onto the barbwire chair for two. Janela hunts for more toys and brings out another table, sending this one into the ring. Moxley catches him in a fireman's carry and teases dumping him over the top rope. Janela escapes, but Moxley blocks a suplex attempt. They fight on the apron and Janela with a Russian leg sweep to take them both through the table.
Back inside, Moxley tackle carries Janela across the ring and through the second table. Moxley finds ANOTHER table and Janela flips him off. Moxley pulls a board covered with barbwire out and positions it into the corner. I won't take this seriously until we get a little red wagon. Janela escapes a double-arm DDT and fireman carry slams Moxley into the barbwire board for two. Janela with a flurry of forearms, knocking Moxley into the corner. He pulls himself out of the corner and turns Janela inside-out with a lariat. Janela escapes an overhead lift and connects with a pair of Super-Kicks. He pulls out a ladder because why not. Moxley pulls Janela out of the ring, only to get sent into the steps. Janela positions Moxley across the tables, climbs the ladder, and dives off with a flying elbow. Even with the height, it only (barely) breaks one table. Janela pulls out another barbwire board ("he has one, too?!") and positions it across the guardrail and ring apron. Moxley is back in the ring and surprises Janela with the double-arm DDT (no longer called Dirty Deeds, obviously). Moxley scoops Janela up and slams him over the top rope, through the barbwire board. Janela won't stop fighting, so Mox brutalizes him with knee strikes. Our next weapon of choice: a bag of thumbtacks. He strips the boots and SOCKS from Janela to show he means business. Janela fights free but gets suplex dropped onto the thumbtacks. Mox stomps the hand onto the tacks and atomic drops Janela, making sure to let his feet contact them. Janela responds with a middle finger. Mox empties a second bag of thumbtacks and hits the Paradigm Shift (elevated double-arm DDT) for three at 20:02. No blade jobs, but a lot of small body cuts from the weapons used. If you're into a fantasy booking, this is the wild stuff everyone hoped to get for the match with Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania 32. I'm not a fan of the genre personally, so my rating can dip lower or go higher, depending on tour mileage. I think you could've shaved a few minutes off to keep the pace going a bit smoother. ***1/2
-Post-match, Kenny Omega gains a bit of revenge from Double or Nothing, hitting Moxley with a V-Trigger and hitting him with piledriver on one of the ringside tables. He puts the table onto Moxley and springs off the top rope to stomp the pile. He drags Moxley around the arena and slams him into a drum kit. The show closes with Moxley smiling after the beating he took. I don't think this man is playing with a full deck of cards.
Final Thoughts: Ignoring a hit and miss "Buy In" (it's a pre-show, so I don't expect much, but they still need to produce better content than Allie/Bates and the garbage with Nakazawa), the main card delivered nothing but solid matches. Nothing is a must-see, but at a 2 ½ hour main card, this was paced well. My only complaints were the chair-shot on Cody, and not being a big fan of "Deathmatch" style gimmicks, especially as the show-closing match. With three matches on top that seemed to have little doubt in result, they wisely used the time limit situation to try and elevate someone, though the match itself was nothing special. Give the show a look if you have time, it's better than watching Stomping Ground.
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