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AEW Collision - August 5, 2023

by Doc Allen

Ricky Starks

Live from Bon Secours Wellness Arena in Greenville, South Carolina. WrestleTix estimates attendance at 3,825. Our hosts are Ian Riccaboni and Nigel McGuinness.

AEW Tag Team Championship:
FTR © (Dax Harwood and Cash Wheeler) vs. The Mogul Embassy (Brian Cage and Big Bill, with Prince Nana)

Cage gets the better of Wheeler, hitting a shoulder block. Short arm clothesline by Cage, but Cash counters a press slam into a crossbody. Cash chops the throat and makes a tag, but Cage flattens FTR with a double clothesline. Tag to Big Bill, who misses an elbow drop, but manages to scoop slam Wheeler and shimmy his way to a proper elbow drop. Cash answer with a missile dropkick. Big Bill gets swarmed by FTR and their quick tags. Big Bill blocks the Big Rig and chokeslams Dax onto Cash. Big Bill press slams Cash onto Dax outside. Back from commercials, Big Bill is dismantling Cash in front of his mother. Cash escapes a torture rack but Bill responds with a decapitation lariat. Cash dodges Bill's splash and gives Cage a German suplex. Dax gets a fiery hot tag and runs wild. FTR hit Cage with a Doomsday Bulldog for only 2. Cage hoists FTR for a combo fallaway slam. The Embassy hit stereo chokeslams for a good nearfall. The Embassy's Doomsday Device gets broken up, but Cage hits a cannonball senton to outside. Bill boots down but Cash kicks out! Fans chant "this is awesome!"" FTR recover and hit Cage with the Big Rig to abruptly win at 15:03. This was really cooking, with the unlikely challengers giving the champions a real scare until it suddenly ended, ***½.
Winners and still AEW Tag Team Champions: FTR

Dax Harwood gets on the mic and puts over FTR's legacy in the making. Cash Wheeler issues a challenge to the Young Bucks for ALL IN! They'll have their rubber match in front of 80,000 fans.

Hype video for tonight's CM Punk/Ricky Starks main event. Starks really wants Punk's unofficial AEW title for some odd reason.

Tony Shiavone interviews Juice Robinson and a cardboard cutout of Jay White. The real Jay White knocks the cutout over, much to Juice's heartbreak, and threatens to do the same thing to Metalik. The Gunns drop in to play ring announcers, and they all point their finger guns at poor Tony.

TBS Championship:
Kris Statlander © vs. Mercedes Martinez

Martinez hits a flurry of shots before Kris fights back with a shotgun dropkick. Martinez blocks a suplex but Kris trips her down for a somersault leg drop. Martinez pops up and stomps a mudhole into Kris. Rolling butterfly suplexes by Martinez. Thrust kick by Kris, but Martinez pummels her down again. Back from commercials, Statlander makes the regularly scheduled babyface comeback. She misses a flying shoulder block from the apron, but counters into a backbreaker. Kris gets her neck snapped onto the ropes but recovers for a scoop slam. Martinez hits a German superplex! Running knee by Martinez only gets 2. Kris blocks a Fisherman suplex and nails her Fisherman buster for a good nearfall. Martinez plants Kris for another good nearfall, but Kris bridges her back to put her shoulders down to win at 10:15! Kris looks lucky to get out alive, masterful heel performance by Martinez, ***¼.
Winner and still TBS Champion: Kris Statlander

Mercedes gives Kris a post match beatdown. Diamante runs in for the save but then SWERVES and helps beat up Kris some more. Willow Nightingale runs in next and I amuse myself by imagining her turning on Kris too, but she actually saves the day.

Tony Shiavone chats with Toni Storm backstage. Toni is trying to be professional about losing the Women's title and avoid freaking out like everyone expects. Toni proceeds to freak out anyway, going into an insecure meltdown.

ROH TV Champion Samoa Joe vs. Serpentico

Serpentico charges at Joe but gets tossed into the air. Rear naked choke ends it at 0:16. Joe doesn't get paid by the hour.
Winner: Samoa Joe

Joe gets on the mic and reminds us that he's the one true king of television. He wants to be a part of ALL IN and he's still sore about losing to CM Punk in the Owen Hart Tournament. Years ago, he and Punk spent 3 years battling in the ring, and a rollup is not worth their legacy. Joe challenges Punk for ALL IN, because it's worth their legacy. Oh hell yeah.

Andrade El Idolo video promo. He's got his precious black mask back, but he wants more of the House of Black.

Tony Shiavone sits chant to chat with The Acclaimed. They have Billy Gunn's boots in their possession. They tried to return the boots, but Gunn stood firm about retiring. The Acclaimed become emotional as they reminisce about everyway that Gunn helped their careers.

AEW Trios Championship:
The House of Black © (Malakai Black, Buddy Matthews, and Brody King, with Julia Hart) vs. Darius Martin, Action Andretti, and Lee Johnson

This is a “House Rules” match, but it's not clear what that means. As soon as I type that, a graphic explains that there's a 20 count, any 3 competitors can form a trio, no rope breaks, disqualifications are enforced, and “dealer's choice.” The challengers choose for Julia to be banned from ringside. Darius starts against the imposing King, but is to quick for him early on. King blocks a flying crossbody by puffing his chest. Darius avoids getting stuck in the House's corner, Andretti tags in for a rana. Black smashes Andretti against the barricade and hits a brutal knee to the face. Tag to Buddy, who tosses Action onto the ropes. Back from commercials, Johnson is running wild on a hot tag and hits double inverted DDTs. Johnson follows with a double springboard cutter. The HoB quickly turn things around and King destroys Lee with a corner cannonball, while Buddy and Black are a little late with their supporting enziguris. King has Lee beat, but Andretti slightly mistimes a saving springboard 450 splash to break it up. Darius hits a frog splash on King, who throws him away on the pin escape. Andretti and Martin hit suffocating kicks on King, but Darius obviously throws Action into knee lifts from Black and Murphy. Lariat by King ends it at 9:07. Pretty good for a glorified squash, but the House Rules stips meant absolutely nothing, **.
Winners and still AEW Trios Champions: The House of Black

The House of Black vs. CM Punk and FTR is announced for next week.

Tony Shiavone tries to interview Powerhouse Hobbs, but they're interrupted by QT Marshall and Harley Cameron. They offer up some golden links as a gift and want to help him win some vague big match at All Out in Chicago. Hobbs will take the gold, but doesn't want QT's help.

Tony Shiavone chats with Christian Cage (with TNT Champion Luchasaurus) and Christian's young daughter (who looks super uncomfortable). She wants to hold the TNT title, but Christian refuses, because she didn't win it. Father of the year, eh?

Metalik vs. Jay White (with Bullet Club Gold)

The Gunns crash commentary, much to Nigel's great delight. Jay's cutout is here to offer moral support. Despite all the silliness at ringside, Jay is total business when it comes to stomping Metalik into oblivion. Metalik hits a rana, enziguri, but misses a springboard attempt. DDT by Jay gets 2. Jay drives Metalik into the ring post and hits a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker. Metalik quickly escapes a half crab, so White catapults him into the ropes. Metalik fights back and hits Sling Blade. Flying rana by Metalik, followed by an Asai moonsault. Jay dodges a moonsault and hits a vicious suplex. Blade Runner ends it at 5:11. Good short match and a very good example of why glorified squashes don't need commercial breaks, **¼.
Winner: Jay White

Bullet Club Gold hold a joyous in-ring celebration with cardboard Jay.

Hype video for Hikaru Shida vs. Anna Jay on Dynamite. Shida was Jay's first AEW opponent and she accuses her of taking advantage of her.

Jim Ross joins commentary for the main event.

:Real World Championship:"
CM Punk © vs. Ricky Starks

Guest Second Referee: Ricky Steamboat
Starks scores a shoulder block, Punk scores back with a hip toss. They trade holds to dueling chants. Shoulder block by Punk gives him time to mock Starsk' poses. Wild arm drags by Starks, who then mocks Punk's trademark poses. They block each other's finishers and tumble outside. Back from commercials, Starks is sporting a bruised eye, and Punk is kind of toying with him. Starks unleashes an angry flurry of punches, Punk returns fire. Starks slaps Punk's face and runs away, but Punk pushes him over the barricade. Punk is kicking too much @ss, so Steamboat makes him stop so they can return to the ring. Starks capitalizes and hits a sliding dropkick. Flying sledgehammer by Starks gets 1, and he thinks it's Steamboat's fault. Punk elbows out of a waistlock, but Starks' hard Irish whip keeps him in control. Back from MORE commercials, Punk hits a superplex but seems to take the worst of it himself. Punk looks wounded but continues his trademark comeback routine. Starks awkwardly counters Hail to the King and blocks the GTS, but Punk nearly steals it with a backslide. Punk exposes his right knee, but runs into a Starks powerbomb for a good nearfall. They trade rapid counters until Punk hits a big kick for another 2. Fans chant “this is awesome!” Starks reverses a piledriver into an Alabama Slam for 2. Starks inadvertently wipes out the referee, and tries a rope assisted cover anyway, which Steamboat naturally breaks up. Punk rolls Ricky up and Steamboat counts to 3 at 22:07. Well, that finishing sequence sure makes Ricky look stupid. This was a good match with an invested crowd, but at this stage it's hard to take Punk's vanity championship seriously. ***
Winner and still "Real World Champion:" CM Punk

Starks shoves Steamboat into Punk and then whips The Dragon like a dog. Punk chases Starks away with a chair, but the damage has already been done.

Final Thoughts: Pretty good 2 hours of wrestling TV, with some championship matches that had foregone conclusions in which the challengers put some good fear into the champions. Not the most must-see episode of Collision, but certainly better than the weeks with filler tag team main events. It's also fun to see the ALL IN card starting to take shape. I'm in a good mood after watching, check this out if you have time.

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