AEW Double or Nothing 2022 Results: Winners, Grades, Reaction and Highlights

Erik Beaston@@ErikBeastonFeatured ColumnistMay 29, 2022

AEW Double or Nothing 2022 Results: Winners, Grades, Reaction and Highlights

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    Credit: All Elite Wrestling

    AEW returned to Las Vegas Sunday for one of its biggest pay-per-view events of the year, Double or Nothing, headlined by the much-anticipated showdown between world champion "Hangman" Adam Page and No. 1 contender, CM Punk.

    The event, the culmination of some of the biggest feuds in the company and a celebration of three years of all elite competition, featured a jam-packed 13-match card and the potential to be one of the best in-ring presentations the company has ever produced.

    Did it? Were there new champions crowned or storylines started and what did it all mean for the company moving into the rest of 2022?

    Find out the answer to those questions and more with this recap of the blockbuster May 29 extravaganza, complete with grades and analysis for each of the night's contests.

Match Card

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    • AEW World Championship Match: "Hangman" Adam Page (c) vs. CM Punk
    • AEW World Women's Championship Match: Thunder Rosa (c) vs. Serena Deeb
    • AEW World Tag Team Championship Match: Jurassic Express (c) vs. Swerve Strickland and Keith Lee vs. "Absolute" Ricky Starks and "Powerhouse" Will Hobbs
    • TBS Championship Match: Anna Jay vs. Jade Cargill (c)
    • Owen Hart Foundation Men's Tournament Final: Samoa Joe vs. Adam Cole
    • Owen Hart Foundation Women's Tournament Final: Ruby Soho vs. Dr. Britt Baker DMD
    • Wardlow vs. MJF
    • Anarchy in the Arena: Eddie Kingston, Santana, Ortiz, Bryan Danielson and Jon Moxley vs. The Jericho Appreciation Society
    • The Hardys vs. The Young Bucks
    • Death Triangle vs. The House of Black
    • Darby Allin vs. Kyle O'Reilly
    • Scorpio Sky, "All Ego" Ethan Page and Paige VanZant vs. Sammy Guevara, Frankie Kazarian and Tay Conti
    • The Buy-In: Danhausen and Hook vs. Tony Nese and "Smart" Mark Sterling

The Buy-In: Hook and Danhausen vs. Tony Nese and "Smart" Mark Sterling

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    Credit: All Elite Wrestling

    The wildly entertaining duo of Hookhausen earned their first victory as a team in Sunday's Buy-In match, defeating Tony Nese and attorney "Smart" Mark Sterling in a fun, inoffensive tag bout.

    The heels shook off curses from Danhausen to beat him down and cut him off from his partner. A hot tag to Hook sparked the comeback for the popular tandem and culminated with the second-generation star tagging his very nice, very evil partner so that he could score the pinfall on Sterling.

    This was mostly comedy, but the crowd in Las Vegas was red-hot for all of it. Danhausen, in particular, was massively over and trumped even Hook in that department. Not much of a wrestling match itself, this was a nice departure from some of the more uber-serious encounters that will define tonight's pay-per-view broadcast.





    Top Moments

    • The crowd heat for Nese downing and beating on Danhausen was enormous and proof of the face-painted comedy act's popularity. 
    • Sterling denying he tagged in rather than competing against Hook was a nice touch.
    • Hook gave Danhausen the opportunity to finish off Sterling rather than tapping him out with the Kata-Ha-Jime in a nice ode to the growing friendship between unlikely teammates.

Wardlow vs. MJF

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    Credit: All Elite Wrestling

    Wardlow earned his AEW contract, and freedom from MJF, with a dominant, one-sided ass-kicking.

    A match shrouded in controversy before the bell ever rang unfolded as predicted, with The Wardog obliterating The Salt of the Earth with 10 powerbombs, the fans in Las Vegas erupting after each one.

    This was booked to perfection and everything it needed to be.

    Ol' Max tried everything he could to try and escape the inevitable but Wardlow cut him off at every turn and dealt him the punishment that was two-and-a-half years in the making. It was fantastic, the crowd responded accordingly and most importantly, the massive babyface emerged a legitimate star as a result.

    Who knows what the real situation is between MJF, Tony Khan and AEW but in a big moment, when he absolutely had to, he showed up and did everything in his power to make sure Wardlow's story was paid off in the best, most effective way possible.

    This was a fantastic way to kick off the show and the culmination of the best story leading into the night.





    Top Moments

    • MJF made an airplane gesture, mocking a report by Sean Ross Sapp of Fightful Select that he had booked a flight home from Las Vegas Saturday night amid contractual disagreements with AEW. 
    • The Salt of the Earth bit Wardog's head to escape the powerbomb.
    • MJF grabbed the Dynamite Diamond Ring out of his trunks, only to be caught by referee Bryce Remsburg and Wardlow.
    • The look of euphoria on Wardlow's face following the first powerbomb was superb and reflective of the expulsion of months of anger, frustration and rage. 
    • Tony Schiavone revealed Wardlow's All Elite graphic after the match, the perfect payoff to the idea that he is now an official member of the roster.

The Hardys vs. The Young Bucks

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    Credit: All Elite Wrestling

    Billed as a dream match between two of the best tag teams in wrestling history, the battle between The Hardys and The Young Bucks was a tale of two halves.

    The first was slow, plodding and featuring a Jeff Hardy that appeared out of it and a step slower than everyone else in the match. He struggled, with brother Matt audibly calling his spots for him, and the match suffered for it.

    When he recovered, the match flowed much better. The Bucks unloaded superkicks and their opponents defiantly dared them to bring more. They did, but the resilient Hardys absorbed and advanced, with Jeff dealing a final blow to Matt Jackson by way of a death-defying swanton bomb, then joining his brother in putting Nick away for the win.

    Had the match been more consistent throughout, this would have been an easy 'B+' at the very least. As it was, it was a good match that probably exposed the Hardys' ability to go long but did enough to satisfy the audience's love for all things Team Extreme. 





    Top Moments

    • Ring of Honor's Caprice Coleman joined the commentary team for the match.
    • Fake Elvis performed "Superkick Party" to the tune of "Viva Las Vegas" ahead of The Young Bucks' entrance.
    • Nick started a "that was awesome" chant of his own after countering Jeff's Poetry in Motion with a hard kick to the face.
    • Nick slapped Brandon Cutler when the crowd chanted for the lovable sidekick.
    • The Hardys defiantly spit in the faces of the Bucks, daring them to superkick them some more.
    • Jeff launched himself off the top rope with a Swanton Bomb onto Matt Jackson, who was sprawled out on the ring steps in another crowd-pleasing high spot.

TBS Championship Match: Anna Jay vs. Jade Cargill

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    Credit: All Elite Wrestling

    Dark Order's Anna Jay used the loss to TBS champion Jade Cargill back in January to fuel her to an impressive unbeaten streak entering her second shot at dealing That Bitch her first AEW defeat.

    Despite a valiant effort that saw her overcome interference from Kiera Hogan, Red Velvet and Mark Sterling, not to mention the debut of Stokely Hathaway, Jay fell prey to a top-rope Jaded as Cargill earned another impressive victory.

    After the match, Kris Statlander came to the defense of her friend before "The Fallen Goddess" Athena (formerly WWE's Ember Moon) made her debut and stood side-by-side with the babyfaces.

    The match was not the prettiest, but it was still very good and reflective of the growth of both women to this point in their careers. Cargill is undisputably the star of the women's division, head and shoulders above everyone else on the roster. She is the future of the sport and could easily stand alongside the likes of CM Punk, Hangman Page, Kenny Omega and The Young Bucks as top AEW stars.

    Jay is a star of the future, too; a young competitor who gets better with every performance and showed her worth in this high-stakes pay-per-view encounter. That she figures to stay in the hunt, alongside Statlander and Athena in a feud with Cargill and her baddies is promising.

    Better than expected, this was a solid match that exceeded relatively nonexistent expectations given the lack of build to it.





    Top Moments

    • The commentary team told the story of Jay's loss to Cargill back in January and her undefeated streak since, giving story and gravity to a match that previously had none.
    • Jay dropped Kiera Hogan and Red Velvet at ringside with a double DDT.
    • Cargill kicked out of a shot to the face with a crutch.
    • John Silver laid out Mark Sterling at ringside, preventing his interference.

Death Triangle vs. The House of Black

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    Credit: All Elite Wrestling

    Theatricality gave way to the best match of the show to this point, a nonstop, action-packed six-man tag match that made the case for both trios titles and expanded roles for all six men involved.

    The crowd was red-hot for every spot, all six competitors and an ending that has been built up to for months.

    Late in the bout, Pac appeared to be rolling after partners Rey Fenix and Penta Oscura laid out Buddy Matthews and Brody King at ringside, leaving Malakai Black to fend for himself. Just as The Bastard set up for the Black Arrow, the arena darkened and when they the lights came back up, Julia Hart blinded him with black mist, pledging her allegiance to the heels.

    The match was extraordinary and showcased the heels in a way they had not been to this point. It was their best performance as a unit; star-making use of the most intriguing and enigmatic act in the company. Black looked like a total badass, welcoming a beating by his opponents before laying two of the three out with his Black Mass finisher.

    The introduction of Hart has been expected for months and now that she has made the turn, the faction can finally move forward to bigger and, hopefully, more significant things.

    Death Triangle was predictably great and will remain a high-profile act. And rightfully so. Their excellence, coupled with that of House of Black, the star-power of Adam Cole and RedDragon, and the inevitable return of Kenny Omega alongside the Young Bucks, makes for a trios division that would be unprecedented in major professional wrestling.

    Give us the titles, Tony Khan, and watch as your company does something neither WWE nor WCW nor any other major promotion in the states has: present six-man tag team wrestling as a legitimate, viable and main event entity.





    Top Moments

    • The entrances of both teams were spectacular and drew the audience in way before the bell ever rang.
    • The series of dives midway through the bout, climaxing with the massive King wiping out the competition, popped the crowd and was very much the best moment of the match to that point.
    • The heels delivered Dante's Inferno but Penta and Fenix shoved Matthews and King into Black to break up the pin.
    • Death Triangle encircled Black, who found himself isolated and without his partners. 
    • Black wiped out Fenix and Penta with Black Mass in an impressive display of defiance from the leader of the House of Black.

Owen Hart Foundation Men's Tournament Final: Samoa Joe vs. Adam Cole

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    Credit: All Elite Wrestling

    The men's side of the Owen Hart Foundation Tournament ended not with a bang, but the predictable as Adam Cole defeated Samoa Joe to enter his name in the history books.

    Benefiting from a distraction caused by RedDragon buddy Bobby Fish, Cole blasted the Ring of Honor Television champion with The Boom to score the pinfall victory.

    The match, the finals of the prestigious tournament, felt disappointingly lackluster. It was perfectly acceptable professional wrestling from two guys who are far above average. Unfortunately, the match itself never reached that level.

    Joe overcame shoulder pain but in the end, it was the same old interference finish that has been so synonymous with Cole matches over the last four or so years. Would it have really hurt for Cole to win clean; to defeat Joe and prove he can actually win one of these high-profile matches without relying on Fish and Kyle O'Reilly? 

    Yes, he is a heel and heels cheat but for the finals of this tournament, would it have been that bad for Joe to lose to a guy that was previously the top contender for the world title? 

    The repetitive finish, the predictable winner and the so-so match that preceded it all made for the night's first real disappointment.





    Top Moments

    • Cole rocked a pair of pink and black tights, reminiscent of those worn by the tournament's namesake when he won the 1994 King of the Ring tournament.
    • Joe stretched Cole in a vicious submission as the heel inched closer to the ropes, pulling his arm backward.

Owen Hart Foundation Women's Tournament Final: Ruby Soho vs. Dr. Britt Baker DMD

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    Credit: All Elite Wrestling

    Dr. Britt Baker made history, defeating Ruby Soho in a match that felt far too much like more of the same.

    Baker utilized the counter to the victory roll, much like Owen Hart did against brother Bret in his most famous victory, but her victory did more to highlight an issue with the women's division that Tony Khan and Co. have yet to recognize: so much emphasis has been put on Baker that every other woman not-named Jade Cargill has been de-emphasized and hurt for it.

    Case in point, Soho. 

    The pieces were in place for her to score the biggest win of her career and shake off the disappointing loss from last September's Dynamite Grand Slam. Instead, in her third shot at a marquee victory, she lost. Clean, with no excuse to speak of.

    And why? To give Baker another signature win.

    Much like Charlotte Flair over in WWE, so much focus and attention has been paid to Baker that no one else benefits. They are stripped of credibility in the name of highlighting someone who is already perpetually over.

    Where does Soho go from here? She's a three-time loser with no semblance of momentum. She is essentially done for, far worse off than she was entering a tournament that really could have stood to create a star somewhere along the line.

    At least the match was a marked improvement upon its predecessor, with Soho selling her injured ribs throughout and and hard work from both women leading to a clever finish.

    If there was a silver lining, it was the joy expressed by Dr. Martha Hart after the match, when she presented Baker and Adam Cole with beautiful Owen Hart Tournament title belts. Her acceptance back into a world she understandably left behind 23 years ago has been one of the truly great elements of pro wrestling in 2022.





    Top Moments

    • Rancid played Soho to the ring with, you guessed it, "Ruby Soho." Friggin sweet, dude!
    • Baker, like her significant other in the match prior, sported pink and black tights in honor of the late, great Hart.
    • "These people don't give a s**t about you," Baker taunted her opponent.
    • "There will be other winners of this tournament. There will never be another time to be the first," Jim Ross said on commentary, putting over the significance of the match to the two competitors.
    • The finish was right out of WrestleMania X, where Owen defeated brother Bret with a countered victory roll.
    • The AEW fans showered Dr. Martha Hart with chants of "thank you, Martha." 

Six-Person Tag Team Match

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    Credit: All Elite Wrestling

    If you arrived at the six-person mixed tag team match unsure of who to cheer or why to care about anyone involved, you are not alone. No one was particularly likable or even presented as a babyface and like the booking leading into it, the match itself was all over the place.

    VanZant starred, which was the point of the whole thing in the first place so, in that regard, it worked. There was tension between Kazarian and Sammy Guevara over the latter's continued focus on his girlfriend, Tay Conti, rather than the objective at hand.

    Moves were executed, there were a few comedic spots and Guevara blasted Conti in the most talked-about spot of the bout. In the end, it was TNT champion Scorpio Sky delivering the TKO to Kazarian for the win and to ensure neither he nor Guevara can challenge for the title again.

    This was one of the ugliest, most disjointed and not particularly great matches in AEW history. The lack of flow, storytelling that was all over the place and unlikable characters made that possible. Thankfully, it is over and AEW can focus on presenting Guevara and Conti as heels, do the same for American Top Team, and give Kazarian something less obnoxious to be involved in.

    Kudos to VanZant for shining in her debut and executing what she was asked to superbly. She is going to be a massive star for the company if it can figure out how to best use her.





    Top Moments

    • Kazarian and Guevara demonstrated dissension, probably to protect the former's babyface heat.
    • VanZant sent Conti head-first into the nether regions of her boyfriend Guevara.
    • VanZant planted Guevara with a great tornado DDT.
    • Guevara attempted to cheap-shot his own partner but accidentally laid out Conti instead.

Darby Allin vs. Kyle O'Reilly

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    Credit: All Elite Wrestling

    Darby Allin set out to avenge the leg injury suffered by friend and mentor, Sting, at the hands of RedDragon as he battled Kyle O'Reilly in a late addition to the pay-per-view card.

    The competitors delivered an intensely physical bout that overcame lackadaisical booking ahead of it and a crowd teetering on burnout to become one of the best on the show.

    Allin was his normal, daredevil self, throwing his body around the squared circle (for better or worse) and matching O'Reilly's physicality throughout. In the end, though, it was the strike-heavy O'Reilly who dropped a big knee on the former TNT champion to score the biggest singles victory of his AEW run thus far.

    The face-painted antihero of AEW threw everything he had at his opponent, including his body, but was simply outwrestled by the better man and that is one of wrestling's few timeless, easy-to-follow stories.





    Top Moments

    • The crowd erupted for Allin's entrance, proving he is one of the trusted young stars of AEW's bright future.
    • Allin's foot clipped the bottom rope during a dive, leading to him landing on his head and rotating forward to wipe out O'Reilly in a scary spot.
    • O'Reilly rocked Allin with a kick that bloodied his mouth.

AEW Women's Championship Match: Thunder Rosa vs. Serena Deeb

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    Credit: All Elite Wrestling

    One was the best wrestler in the AEW women's division. The other? Women's champion Thunder Rosa, herself a damn fine in-ring performer. Together, there managed to deliver a hotly competitive match for the top prize in the division that played up the competitive spirit of the champ and the technical skill of her top contender.

    Deeb outwrestled the champion early but La Mera Mera fought back and found herself in control of the bout after several minutes on the defensive. Unable to retain control, the women teed off on each other, the champion forced to fight through a knee injury to remain in the fight.

    She did, rocking Deeb with a headbutt, delivering a superplex and finishing her off with a Thunder Fire Driver for the win.

    This was, arguably, the most technically proficient women's match in AEW history. Deeb is an expert, a masterful technician who brings that element to every one of her performances. Rosa is a fiery babyface who had the crowd in her corner as she repeatedly fought through the pain and agony of a knee injury to retain her title.

    Hopefully, in the wake of this match, both women can benefit from better booking than they had entering the show. Rather than cutting promos, a clear weak point for both, letting them wrestle and remind fans of their excellence between the ropes would be a great place to start. 





    Top Moments

    • Deeb and Rosa brought an exhausted crowd back into their match through sheer willpower and extraordinary, technical professional wrestling.
    • "You have to be a genuinely tough son-of-a-gun to use the headbutt consistently and effectively," Jim Ross said as Rosa rocked the heel with said strike.

Anarchy in the Arena

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    Credit: All Elite Wrestling

    Blood flowed freely in Anarchy in the Arena as the Jericho Appreciation Society (Chris Jericho, Jake Hager, Daniel Garcia, Matt Menard and Angelo Parker) battled Jon Moxley, Bryan Danielson, Eddie Kingston, Santana and Ortiz in a wild, chaotic brawl.

    The fans in Las Vegas cheered the unbridled violence that spilled into the stands, into the arena corridor, around the ringside area and back into the squared circle. The AEW production team did a fantastic job of capturing the handful of fights as they unfolded around the arena and the image of a crimson-caked Kingston stalking to the ring with a gas can, determined to ignite Jericho, was haunting.

    The JAS won the match when Jericho trapped Danielson in a single-leg crab and Hager choked him out with the broken ring rope. The crowd reacted appropriately, greeting the finish with silence, in awe of the fact that Blackpool Combat Club, Kingston, Santana and Ortiz lost.

    It was the most obvious outcome on the entire card. After months of torment, Kingston needed to get his revenge on Jericho and Co. and end the feud for good. Instead, a faction that is so far from over that changing the channel when they come on is not out of the equation, defeated the most badass act in the company (Moxley and Danielson) and robbed Kingston of his vengeance.

    No, the finish does not make fans want to wait another month to see Kingston finally shut Jericho down. This does not heat things up further in hopes of drawing for a rematch. It annoys fans who waited patiently for a payoff that never came.

    Jericho as The Wizard might be harmless fun but booking missteps like this are not. Now, AEW will have to explain why a group of believable and credible badasses just lost to the sports entertainment goofballs who arrived for the match looking like a 1999 boy band.

    As for the brawl itself, it was essentially every brawl we have ever seen before on AEW television. They happen so frequently at this point that pay-per-view offerings like this, no matter how favorably the fans react, lose their impact. The more you do something, the more it waters it down and adversely affects its ability to leave an impression.

    This was no different.





    Top Moments

    • For some reason, Moxley's "Wild Thing" theme continued to play as the action started and the competitors brawled around the squared circle.
    • Jericho used a fork on Moxley's eye, a throwback to their first feud over the AEW world title back in 2019-20.
    • Jericho smashed the soundboard, finally ending the repetition of said theme.
    • Santana and Ortiz drove Hager through a table with the Streetsweeper.
    • Kingston and Menard paid homage to the Memphis concession stand brawl, complete with a mustard battle.
    • Garcia, with a belt wrapped around the throat of Kingston, dragged him across the arena floor.
    • Santana and Ortiz came off side-by-side ladders and drove Menard and Parker through tables.
    • Kingston and Danielson descended into a physical brawl after the former doused The American Dragon in gasoline while trying to avenge the fireball thrown at him by Jericho weeks earlier.

AEW Tag Team Championship Match

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    Credit: All Elite Wrestling

    AEW World Tag Team champions Jurassic Express (Jungle Boy and Luchasaurus) defended their titles against Team Taz's Powerhouse Hobbs and "Absolute" Ricky Starks and the team of Keith Lee and Swerve Strickland in the penultimate contest of an overly bloated match card.

    Still, despite going on so late in an overly long show, the six competitors delivered a fun, action-heavy match that kept the rejuvenated crowd invested throughout. Lee flying through the air with unmatched athleticism for a man of his size did not hurt matters. 

    Jungle Boy and Christian Cage continued to tease a potential rivalry, each responsible for distractions that could have cost the champions their titles. Instead, Jurassic Express overcame the challenge of two very game teams to retain and continue their reign as champs and one of the most perpetually over tandems in the sport.

    This worked extremely well as it managed to adequately highlight all six competitors. Lee and Strickland very easily could have won the titles here and the fans would have popped for the moment, but this was not the time to take the titles off a Jurassic Express that still has work to do in their role as the standard-bearers for the division.

    Especially given the inevitable heel turn by Cage and feud with Jungle Boy that appears to be on the horizon.





    Top Moments

    • Lee soared over the top rope and wiped out the competition in a great high spot.
    • Jungle Boy checked on the wellbeing of mentor Cage, only to nearly lose the match when Starks nearly capitalized on the distraction with a victory.
    • Hobbs just barely broke up a Strickland pin that should have earned Swerve and Lee the tag titles. 
    • Cage prevented Starks from cheating but provided a distraction that Strickland nearly took advantage of.

AEW World Championship Match: "Hangman" Adam Page vs. CM Punk

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    Credit: All Elite Wrestling

    A crisis of conscience unraveled Hangman Page's reign as AEW world champion in a very good main event that fell just shy of achieving the epic befitting the pre-match hype.

    CM Punk took advantage of the champion's decision not to utilize the world title belt to flatten his challenger and put him away with the Go To Sleep for the win.

    The match was at its best when the combatants were focused on beating the hell out of each other. When they swayed too far into WWE style, with the stealing of each other's finishers, the match fell apart a bit. Look no further than Punk twice botching the Buckshot Lariat.

    Page and Punk recovered nicely to deliver a final few minutes befitting a match of this magnitude that also doubled as a foreshadowing of things to come. What effect will Page's failure to win after taking the good guy approach and resisting the urge to cheat have on him? What will AEW under Punk look like?

    Those are two questions that will entice viewers to tune in Wednesday, sure, but also help define the immediate future of the company's main event scene.

    There will be some that are unhappy with the decision to have Page drop the title and those fans are absolutely in the right. It never once felt like AEW truly got behind him as their champion, despite the two-year story that got him there. Hopefully, he stays in the mix at the top of the card and can get another run with the gold because his story as a world champion in the company feels both unsatisfying and unfinished.

    With that said, Punk winning was probably the right call. He is the undisputed top star in the company and a guy that is perpetually over. He also has the most to give a potential young challenger to his title, be it Page, MJF, Wardlow, or any other future champion. 

    The main event of Sunday's show was a perfect representation of the event itself: sometimes good, sometimes not, but consistently straddling the fine line in-between. It was not one of the best presentations the company has ever produced but there was enough to like about it to give it a solid thumbs up.

    Just like Punk vs. Page.





    Top Moments

    • Punk and Page chopped the hell out of each other to start. 
    • The crowd alternated chants of "CM Punk" and "cowboy s**t," proof of the 50-50 split of the AEW audience for this main event.
    • Punk and Page worked through a potentially disastrous superplex attempt, executing the move to perfection. 
    • Punk twice botched a Buckshot Lariat and the crowd let him hear it. 
    • Both men appeared to nurse knee injuries at different points.
    • Punk just barely kicked out after the Deadeye, to the point that it appeared as though the referee pulled up on his count to preserve the finish.
    • Page delivered the Go To Sleep for a dramatic two count.
    • The champ teased utilizing the world title, ala Roddy Piper at WrestleMania 8. He did not and Punk beat him to relieve him of the gold.