Saturday's Fyter Fest was All Elite Wrestling's second pay-per-view. After the success of Double or Nothing in May, there was a lot of pressure on the fledgling promotion to prove it could maintain its momentum.
Here is a quick rundown of the results from the show:
- Best Friends defeated SoCal Uncensored and Private Party.
- Allie defeated Leva Bates.
- Michael Nakazawa defeated Alex Jebailey.
- Cima defeated Christopher Daniels.
- Riho defeated Yuka Sakazaki and Nyla Rose.
- Adam Page defeated Maxwell Jacob Friedman, Jimmy Havoc and Jungle Boy.
- Cody (Rhodes) and Darby Allin fought to a time limit draw.
- The Elite defeated The Lucha Bros and Laredo Kid.
- Jon Moxley defeated Joey Janela.
The Bad News
WWE usually only airs one match during its one-hour PPV pre-shows, but AEW looked to stand out by featuring three bouts on the Fyter Fest pre-show.
Unfortunately, only one of them was good. The three-team tag match featuring SoCal Uncensored, Best Friends and Private Party was a lot of fun and showcased some new talents to the AEW crowd in Isiah Kassidy and Marq Quen.
Allie and Leva Bates had a low-energy bout that didn't seem to excite the crowd, but the most controversial match was Nakazawa vs. Jebailey.
Jebailey is not a trained pro wrestler, so this was all about comedy. The laughs were few and far between, and it led a lot of people to speak out on Twitter.
The fans in attendance seemed to have a good time, and that is the most important thing, but AEW has already built up a lot of good will, and it may be preventing some people from realizing it still has a lot of work to do before it can be taken seriously as competition to WWE.
The Women Make a Statement
Bates vs. Allie fell short of expectations, but the match between Yuka Sakazaki, Riho and Nyla Rose received a lot of positive feedback on social media.
All three Superstars were part of Double or Nothing, but this match allowed them to stand out more as individuals than the six-woman tag match did at DON.
The women's division in AEW is already looking good. Rose is being positioned as the dominant force, while Riho and Sakazaki appear to be the resilient underdogs.
The card for AEW's next event, July 13's Fight For the Fallen, is far from complete. It wouldn't be surprising to see all three of these wrestlers included after the positive reactions they received Saturday night.
Cody, Darby Allin and Shawn Spears
Surprisingly, the bloodiest moment of the night did not occur during the match that featured barbed wire and thumb tacks. It happened when Shawn Spears nailed Cody in the side of the head with a steel chair like he was a Major League batter swinging for the fences.
AEW released a statement saying the co-founder received 12 staples and did not suffer a concussion, but the moment still caused a lot of concern among people online.
Cody is already booked to face The Young Bucks at Fight For the Fallen alongside his brother, Dustin Rhodes. If Spears attacking Cody is any indication, we know what they will be doing at All Out on August 31.
This is encouraging because it means AEW is taking Spears seriously and positioning him as a potential main event star, which is a lot more than can be said about his entire time with WWE.
These are two men who chose to leave WWE because they were unhappy, so we should expect them to put everything they have into their eventual match to prove they deserved better.
As for Darby Allin, wrestling Cody to a time limit draw puts him in a great position moving forward. This was his first match in AEW, and he has already earned new fans with his high-risk style and unique look.
Kenny Omega and Jon Moxley
Fyter Fest ended the same way as Double or Nothing, with Moxley and Omega brawling near the stage and using anything they could as a weapon. This time, however, it was Omega who ended up as the last man standing.
This is being portrayed as the big-money feud in AEW, and it is a smart move by management. Omega is arguably the most popular wrestler from the Japanese wrestling scene in recent years, while Moxley reached the top of the mountain in WWE and chose to walk away.
Moxley's match with Janela was everything a hardcore wrestling fan could want, but it was overshadowed by the bigger storyline.
Omega will face Cima at Fight For the Fallen, so he and Moxley will have to wait for All Out to settle their differences.
Adam Page and Chris Jericho
A lot of people were probably surprised when Chris Jericho did not show up at all during Saturday's show, but he had already said he would not be there on Twitter as a way of protesting AEW's decision to give the event away for free on B/R Live.
Page was victorious in his match against Havoc, Jungle Boy and MJF. He is continuing to build momentum leading into his AEW Championship match against Y2J at All Out.
As for FFTF, Hangman will be facing Kip Sabian. Fans will remember him from his impressive outing at Double or Nothing, at which he defeated Sammy Guevara.
Page and Sabian will likely be one of the standout matches at FFTF, but the outcome seems obvious. It will either end with Page scoring another win or end in a draw because of a disqualification, double count-out or running out of time.
The Young Bucks and Lucha Bros
The six-man tag team match with The Elite against Lucha Bros and Laredo Kid was a fun spotfest if that is what you are into, but it fell short of their previous bouts in this long-running feud.
Regardless of whether you enjoyed their match at Fyter Fest, it's clear AEW is banking on these teams to help carry the tag division while duos fans are less familiar with establish themselves.
Nick and Matt Jackson will be taking on Cody and Dustin Rhodes at FFTF, but Pentagon Jr. and Fenix are not booked yet.
It's possible Lucha Bros will end up facing Best Friends at All Out in the tournament to crown the first AEW tag team champions.
MJF is Already a Legend
MJF has lost both of his matches in AEW, but he is already the company's top heel thanks to his skills in the ring and on the mic.
His pre-match promo at Fyter Fest was a perfect example of how to get heat from a crowd, and his performance during the contest was just as good when it came to showing how much of a jerk he can be.
He worked well with Page and Havoc, but a feud against Jungle Boy is the direction AEW should go with both Superstars. It would allow Friedman to continue building up hate from the crowd while giving Jungle Boy the chance to play the underdog.
Pairing the high-flyer with Luchasaurus is going to make for an interesting combination, so we might see MJF recruit a like-minded heel to feud with them as a tag team. Either way, it is going to be entertaining.
AEW Still Has Growing to Do
While Fyter Fest was a fun and exciting event, it also showed that All Elite Wrestling has a lot of work to do before its weekly show begins airing in October.
Thankfully, the company is doing a good job giving new talents time to shine while also featuring the popular names everyone will recognize on the marquee.
The use of blood is going to be controversial, especially if people continue to take unprotected chair shots and use razors to cut themselves. AEW wants to appeal to a more mature audience than WWE, but it shouldn't come at the expense of anyone's well-being.
A little color goes a long way but a lot can be too disturbing for some fans to handle. Let's hope AEW doesn't rely on blood too much moving forward.
As for everything else, All Elite Wrestling is off to a great start. Its second event had a few hiccups but was a fun show as a whole. A lot of people had standout moments, and the fans in attendance seemed to love what was happening in the ring, which is the most important thing.
What did you think of AEW Fyter Fest?