This weekend is jam packed with wrestling. There’s New Japan’s G1 tournament Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights. There’s the Evolve ten year anniversary show on Saturday. There’s WWE Extreme Rules on Sunday. (Card guide to come shortly!) All Elite Wrestling’s third show, Fight for the Fallen, streams free on Saturday evening. The new company’s first show in their official hometown of Jacksonville, Florida will benefit victims of gun violence in the Jacksonville area.
Whether you’ve been on board with AEW since their first press conference or are just curious about checking out some fun, free wrestling this weekend, it never hurts to have a breakdown of each match to help you through.
Britt Baker & Riho vs Shoko Nakajima & Bea Priestley
This women’s tag match was announced Friday night and was added to the preview after it was originally published.
Actual wrestling dentist Britt Baker will team up with Riho to take on Tokyo Joshi Pro’s Shoko Nakajima and Stardom’s Bea Priestley, each of whom is making her AEW debut in this match. Britt Baker really impressed me when she won her match at Double or Nothing, and Riho did the same when she managed to pin the physically imposing Nyla Rose at Fyter Fest.
What should you expect from the team of newcomers? Well, Nakajima’s nickname is “the 147 cm Big Kaiju”— that’s the 4’10” Big Kaiju for all of Americans. She wears a little tail and has all the feistiness and energy of someone that short who would call themselves “Big Kaiju.” Bea Priestley I’ve seen a lot less of, but I think she also does a monster thing.
Prediction: I think Britt Baker & Riho have this one.
Joey Janela, Darby Allin & Jimmy Havoc vs Shawn Spears, Sammy Guevara & MJF
There is a lot of chaotic energy in this match. Wow. Okay, let’s break down these teams. On one side we’ve got our babyfaces: 1. Jimmy Havoc, a goth deathmatch Brit with the brave and noble combination of an emo haircut and a bald spot. 2. Darby Allin, a Seattle skater punk who can’t stop filming himself spray painting words on his 2007 Toyota Camry, and 3. Joey Janela, a Jersey guy who recently made headlines by getting so drunk on alcoholic seltzer that he tried to fight alleged rapist and proven bad rapper #nZo (fka Enzo Amore) at a Blink-182 concert. Let’s call them Team Disaster for the sake of brevity.
On the heel side, we have: 1. Sammy Guevara, high flying Youtuber. 2. MJF, a guy whose fake Burberry scarf is in constant battle with his fake tan for the position of 5th most hateable thing about him, and 3. Shawn Spears (fka Tye Dillenger), the Canadian ex-jobber who hit Cody with a chair at Fyter Fest. Let’s call them Team Douchebag.
In terms of storylines, MJF has had some conflict with Jimmy Havoc before, but that’s about it. This match is basically just a tapas menu of kinds of guys who won’t call you after you have sex with them. (Darby Allin because he writes your number on something that he later bleeds all over. Joey Janela because he extra breaks his already broken phone. Jimmy Havoc because you said something mean about Sisters of Mercy. Team Douchebag all because calling you goes against their belief systems.)
Prediction: Between the Shawn Spears vs Cody angle and how prominently they’ve been featuring MJF, Team Douchebag needs the momentum of a win here more than Team Disaster. I have to go with Spears, Guevara and MJF.
Sonny Kiss vs “The Librarian” Peter Avalon w/ “The Librarian” Leva Bates
It kills me to not be excited about Sonny Kiss’ first singles match in AEW. Plus, I’m from Los Angeles and go to indie wrestling shows sometimes! I enjoy the hell out of some Peter Avalon! But this Librarian schtick needs to stop. It needs to have already stopped. I hate it. (I gave my reasons in my Fyter Fest review.) There’s a conspiracy theory circulating that it only exists to be bad so that AEW can make it stop when the fans complain about it to look like a company who listens to fans. I don’t know if I buy that, but I don’t blame fans for coming up with wild theories to explain why something that sucks so much is being put in front of their eyeballs.
Maybe they’ll abandon the Librarian stuff before the show and then this will be really fun and great. Maybe.
Prediction: Sonny Kiss wins.
Hangman Page vs Kip Sabian
The design team at AEW must have done something in Photoshop to make these two look less hot, because this graphic really just doesn’t convey at all what this match is about. Hold on.
Okay, here we go! (I’m no graphic designer but I think I did a pretty good job.)
Hangman Page beat MJF, Jungle Boy and Jimmy Havoc at Fyter Fest to get this match against the handsome high flyer Kip Sabian. That’s right boys, we’ve got ourselves a good old fashioned hunk battle! Aside from just being dreamy as hell, Page and Sabian’s athletic in-ring styles should make for a really fun match.
Prediction: Kip Sabian will put in a good showing but Hangman Page has to grab the win here.
Brandi Rhodes vs Allie
Chief Brand Officer Brandi Rhodes makes her AEW in-ring debut this weekend against former Impact star Allie. Brandi has gotten a fair amount of flack in the past for not being the best at wrestling, but it looks like she’s been putting in a lot of training time. I have my fingers crossed for her. Allie is very good, but as we saw with her match against Leva Bates, not so good she can carry a whole match by herself. I really want these two to succeed and put on something fun.
Prediction: Allie wins.
Dark Order vs Jack Evans & Angélico vs Luchasaurus & Jungle Boy
Best Friends won their threeway tag match at Fyter Fest to get a match at All Out, and this match determines who they will face. The winner of the match at All Out will get to skip the first round of the AEW World Tag Team Championship Tournament, which will presumably be a thing once their TNT television show starts up in October.
You may remember Jack Evans & Angélico from Double or Nothing, but if you missed that: they’re a couple of real dickheads who do cool flips. You may remember Dark Order from attacking right after Evans & Angélico’s match against Best Friends at Double or Nothing. They are two French Canadian dudes who have a bunch of shirtless henchmen in masks who they sit on like human thrones. There can’t be anything else on Fight for the Fallen that I love more than that. Except… Oh wait… Who do we have here? Why, it’s 6’5″ wrestling dinosaur Luchasaurus and his tiny new best friend Jungle Boy! Does Luchasaurus carry Jungle Boy around on his shoulders? You bet he does. Is it the cutest thing you’ve ever seen? I mean, they are pretty damn cute:
— Luchasaurus (@JudasDraven) June 5, 2019
The combination of a dickhead heel team, a B-movie evil cult heel team, and a babyface team that makes you believe in the power of friendship? That’s a recipe for a good time.
Prediction: My heart says Luchasaurus & Jungle Boy, but my brain says “look dude, they’ve obviously been building to Best Friends vs Dark Order since Double or Nothing.” Hmm. Listen to reason? No way. I’m going with the heartwarming team of a boy and his dinosaur.
SCU vs the Lucha Bros
Scorpio Sky and Frankie Kazarian of SCU against the Lucha Bros Pentagon and Fénix? This gets me right where I live, which is Los Angeles. I’ve seen quite a bit of these four on the indies here and honestly? They could put on an entertaining match with their eyes closed. As far as I can tell, there’s no stipulation or official stakes, but AEW has made it clear that their tag team division is a big priority for them, so early wins and losses are a big deal for figuring out the hierarchy of teams. Expect a nice mix of taunting, high flying and tandem moves.
Prediction: Pentagon and Fénix all the way.
Kenny Omega vs CIMA
It’s a little bit surprising that Kenny Omega and CIMA haven’t met in a wrestling ring until this weekend. (At least that I can find.) I mean, CIMA is a 22 year vet of Japanese and American wrestling scenes. Kenny Omega certainly made the rounds in the United States and Japan before he became the buzzed about “best bout machine” and king of the gamers we all know today. But they were never in the same place at the same time until now.
In a company that has done a fair amount of rehashing old rivalries (which I have no complaints about!), it’s pretty cool to see such a fresh match-up. I’m looking forward to see what they do together.
Prediction: There is no doubt in my mind that Kenny Omega will win this.
The Young Bucks vs Cody & Dustin Rhodes
At the end of their grueling masterpiece at Double or Nothing, Cody asked his brother Dustin to be his partner against the Young Bucks for this very match. I guess what he technically said was “I don’t need a partner, I need my older brother.” (I responded by sobbing loudly, because I can’t see someone else cry without also crying.) We saw the Rhodes brothers pull off a beautifully slow, melodramatic bloodbath, but how will they do as a team?
I have more questions than I have answers about this match. How will these two brothers who grew up separately fare against two who have wrestled as a team since they started training? How will the Young Bucks’ flashiness work against the Rhodes’ slower, more methodical style in making a match I want to watch? Plus, how long do you think the Young Bucks will be able to maintain exclusively wrestling other pairs of brothers on AEW shows? I have my fingers crossed that their opponents at All Out are also brothers of some kind. Maybe cousins. I could work with cousins.
Prediction: The Young Bucks win.
In addition to the matches listed above, the banner advertising Chris Jericho’s presence says he’ll have a microphone, so we also have that to look forward to.
You can stream the preshow for AEW’s Fight for the Fallen for free on Youtube starting at 7:30 PM Eastern. The main show will be streaming live on B-R Live, also for free, starting at 8:15 PM Eastern.