AEW’s return to pay-per-view for Full Gear at Baltimore’s State Farm Arena felt, in many ways, like “another AEW effort.” That is, until the final two matches of the night brought a unique approach that only AEW can truly deliver with a lack of the restrictions imposed on WWE efforts and the elite level talents on the All Elite Wrestling roster.
Cody came up short in a war with AEW champion Chris Jericho, suffering the humiliation of MJF not only throwing in the towel as Jericho locked in the Lion Tamer but also seeing his best friend turn on him with a low blow after the conclusion of the match. In the main event “lights out” match between Kenny Omega and Jon Moxley, seemingly every variety of weapon was brought into play before Moxley finally got the win over Omega in a violent, blood-filled battle to settle their months-old issues. In other championship action, SCU was able to retain the tag championship while Riho emerged to retain the AEW women’s championship.
CBS Sports was with you the entire way Saturday, updating this story with live results and highlights along with a detailed recap and grades.
AEW Full Gear recap, grades
Britt Baker def. Bea Priestly via submission: This was, while still shaky at times, Baker’s best showing in AEW in large part due to the efforts of Priestley. Baker went for Lockjaw early but couldn’t quite lock it in. Priestly hit some big, flashy spots before Baker was finally able to get Lockjaw clinched for the tap. After the match, Brandi Rhodes and Awesome Kong came out and attacked Priestley. The duo cut off a chunk of Priestley’s hair after a brief attack and walked off. Grade: C
Santana & Ortiz def. The Young Bucks via pinfall: Chaos reigned from the opening bell with all four men going at it in and out of the ring before settling back into a standard tag match. In an early highlight, Santana and Ortiz locked both Jacksons up in a combination Boston Crab, Gory Special and Camel Clutch. The Bucks spent a lot of the match attacking the non-legal man to keep things flowing in their direction, which eventually backfired when Nick missed a kick and hit the ring post. He would sell the leg injury from kicking the post the rest of the match, including crashing to the canvas while trying to hit the springboard for the Meltzer Driver down the finishing stretch. Santana blew his nose at the Rock ‘n’ Roll Express, who were seated ringside, calling back to Proud -n- Powerful’s power bombing Ricky Morton through the stage on Dynamite. Santana & Ortiz hit the Street Sweeper on Nick to get the victory. A more traditional tag match than some may have expected between the two, but still good, technical action. Following the match, Sammy Guevara came to the ring to celebrate and join in the beatdown on the Jacksons. As they were about to use a sock full of baseballs, The Express ran in to make the save with Morton hitting a Destroyer and a suicide dive. Grade: B
Adam “Hangman” Page def. PAC via pinfall: There was some nasty, physical action in this one. Page hit a big suicide dive early on but the tables turned when PAC whipped him in the face using the ring ropes. Page hit a huge moonsault dive to the outside but Page came back with a brainbuster on the chair on the outside. The match became a series of high-impact moves from both men, including a top rope fallaway slam from Page into a reverse German suplex from PAC right into a powerbomb from Page. As Page tried to lock in the Deadeye, PAC countered into the Brutalizer. Page escaped the hold, PAC missed the Black Arrow and Page drilled him with a forearm and clothesline before hitting PAC with Deadeye for the win. Grade: B
Shawn Spears def. Joey Janela via pinfall: Janela came out hard, attacking Spears before even removing his jacket. Spears caught Janela as he tried a cross body to the outside, turning it into a powerslam. Spears tied Janela’s hair to the corner tag rope, forcing Janela to rip a chunk of hair out to escape after briefly taking a beating. Janela took several big spills in the match, even when getting his offense in which included a flipping senton dive from the top rope. Spears hit the C-4 death valley driver after using an exposed turnbuckle and a spike piledriver with the help of Tully Blanchard to get the victory. A slight step down from the previous two matches, but still quality stuff. Grade: B-
AEW Tag Team Championship — SCU (c) def. Private Party & Lucha Bros. via pinfall to retain the titles: The early part of the match was surprisingly clunky, with spots not quite going off smoothly. Once the action settled down, the action smoothed out into the kind of constant action fans would expect from these six men. That action included the kind of dive-after-dive spot necessary in a match featuring an impressive collection of high fliers. Private Party had a good near fall after Marq Quen hit a 450 splash. Moments after Kazarian kicked out, they hit Isiah Kassidy with the SCU Later for the victory. Lucha Bros went on the attack after the match, and as Pentagon was about to hit a package piledriver on the chair, the lights went out. When they came back, Christopher Daniels attacked the Lucha Bros and ran them off while dressed like Pentagon. Grade: B–
AEW Women’s Championship — Riho def. Emi Sakura via pinfall to retain the title: Teacher vs. student. Speed vs. Power. All the things you’d expect from a match between these two, with Riho looking to outpace the older, larger Sakura. At this point in the show, the dead crowd is starting to affect the way matches are coming across on the broadcast. Sakura hit a vicious cross body on Riho in the corner. Sakura also turned up her heel work as the match went on, raking the back and mocking referee Bryce Remsburg for intervening. Riho came back after a flurry of big moves and quick pinfall attempts by Sakura to hit a tilt-a-whirl into a pin to retain her championship. Good stuff from both women in a very solid showcase for the champion. Grade: B+
AEW World Championship — Chris Jericho (c) def. Cody via corner stoppage to retain the title: Arn Anderson, Dean Malenko and The Great Muta were judges for the match, set to determine a winner should the match reach the 60-minute time limit. MJF was in Cody’s corner while Jericho was seconded by Jake Hager. The match started with a slow pace, teasing the men would go the distance. Rhodes was busted open early after missing a dive and hitting his face on the entrance ramp. Cody also sold a rib injury from the dive as Jericho alternated focus between the cut over Cody’s eye and attacking the ribs. Cody’s mom got involved at ringside, yelling “f–k you” in Jericho’s face as he taunted her. The distraction was enough for Cody to take over on offense and attack with a figure four. Hager got involved, landing a pair of right hands on Cody before he was ejected from ringside. In retaliation, he attacked MJF, tossing him into the guardrail. Using the distraction, Jericho laid out Cody with the championship belt. Cody was able to kick out. Cody countered the Judas Effect into Cross Rhodes, but the champ kicked out on the near fall. Jericho eventually removed his weight belt and whipped Cody several times. Cody escaped from the Liontamer once, but when it was locked in the second time, including a few stomps to the head, MJF threw in the towel to save Cody, giving Jericho the win after a tremendous effort from both men. After the match, an emotional MJF apologized to Cody before hitting him with a low blow before walking off. Grade: A-
Unsanctioned, Lights Out Match — Jon Moxley def. Kenny Omega via pinfall: This was not a wrestling match, it was a brawl featuring spots you’d expect from a death match card. Moxley opened up fast, blasting Omega with punches. Omega fired right back with shots of his own. They were quick to move the brawl out to the crowd, with Omega landing a flying stomp to a trash can on Moxley’s abdomen. When the action returned to the ring, Moxley grabbed the barbed wire bat from under the ring, using it on the back of Omega and drawing blood. Moxley also raked Omega’s arm with the bat to escape a snap dragon suplex. Omega came back with a piledriver on a trash can before grabbing — and then throwing away — the bat. He then left the ring to retrieve a table and the barbed wire broom, hitting Moxley in the head with it and drawing significant blood from the neck and back of Moxley.
After the barbed wire assault left Moxley bleeding from the side of his face, Omega grabbed a board covered with mousetraps. The plan backfired as Omega was slammed on the board. Moxley brought out chains, slamming Omega on them repeatedly before placing one in the mouth of Moxley and wrenching back with a submission. After Moxley brought an ice pick into the ring, Omega fought back, eventually hanging Moxley from the side of the ring by the neck using the chain. Omega then brought out a bag of broken glass from the table Moxley had driven him through weeks ago. Omega hit a powerbomb into the glass but still couldn’t get a pin. Moxley then had to crawl through broken glass to escape a Sharpshooter. After using the ice pick on the forehead of Moxley, Omega called out The Young Bucks and Adam Page, demanding they bring out a net of barbed wire. Moxley suplexed Omega into the barbed wire, with both men landing in the netting. After they were assisted out, Omega hit a V-Trigger through the Full Gear set. They ended up back in the ring, with Moxley hitting the Paradigm Shift in the glass, but again finding himself unable to get the pin. Moxley then cut away the padding on the ring apron. Omega missed a Phoenix Splash, landing on the exposed wood. Moxley followed up with a Paradigm Shift to get the pinfall. A spot fest, pure and simple, but one that paid off a lengthy program between Moxley and Omega. Grade: A-
AEW Full Gear highlights
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